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Indigenous Land Acknowledgement for Los Angeles County

What is a land acknowledgement? An Indigenous Land or Territorial Acknowledgement is a statement that recognizes the Indigenous peoples who have been dispossessed from the homelands and territories upon which an institution was built and currently occupies and operates in. For some, an Indigenous Land or Territorial Acknowledgement might be an unfamiliar practice, but it is a common protocol within Indigenous communities in the United States and is a standard practice in both Australia and Canada. The terms 'Land' and 'Territorial' are not necessarily interchangeable, and the decision as to their use should be specific and local, pertaining to those Indigenous people who are being acknowledged as well as to those legacies and responsibilities of an institution that are also being acknowledged." ~From the Guide to Indigenous Land and Territorial Acknowledgements for Cultural Institutions

Why acknowledge Indigenous territory or land? "Acknowledgment is a simple, powerful way of showing respect and a step toward correcting the stories and practices that erase Indigenous people’s history and culture and toward inviting and honoring the truth. Imagine this practice widely adopted: imagine cultural venues, classrooms, conference settings, places of worship, sports stadiums, and town halls, acknowledging traditional lands. Millions would be exposed—many for the first time—to the names of the traditional Indigenous inhabitants of the lands they are on, inspiring them to ongoing awareness and action." ~ From the U.S. Department of Arts and Culture Honor Native Land: A Guide and Call to Acknowledgment

According to Pepperdine University, a search for Los Angeles County using Native Land's Territory Acknowledgment tool shows that Los Angeles County sits on Chumash, Tongva, and Kizh land. The San Fernando Valley and parts of northern LA County are also Tataviam territory, as shown on this Original People of Los Angeles County map:

Learn more about the Chumash, Tongva, Kizh and Tataviam nations:

Mapping Indigenous Los Angeles aims to uncover and highlight the multiple layers of indigenous Los Angeles through a storymapping project with youth, community leaders, and elders from indigenous communities throughout the city.

Resources for Allies

  • Indigenous Peoples' Day Supporters' Guide

    Learn more about Indigenous Peoples' Day, Pepperdine's History with Indigenous People, and the land on which Pepperdine's Malibu campus sits with this guide created by the Pepperdine Volunteer Center.

  • Changing the Narrative About Native Americans: A Guide for Allies

    "This guide is a tool in our quest to replace false narratives — and specifically the toxic narrative about Native Americans — with the truth. It boils down two years of extensive research and testing — unprecedented in Indian Country — into actionable information you can use to make your work more effective."

  • Indigenous Allyship: An Overview

    A toolkit for allies from the Laurier Student Public Interest Research Group.


  • Media Indigena logo

    Media Indigena

    MEDIA INDIGENA is a weekly Indigenous current affairs podcast.


  • All My Relations Logo

    All My Relations Podcast

    All My Relations is a podcast hosted by Matika Wilbur (Swinomish and Tulalip) and Adrienne Keene (Cherokee Nation) to explore our relationships— relationships to land, to our creatural relatives, and to one another. Each episode invites guests to delve into a different topic facing Native American peoples today.

  • Artwork for The Henceforward

    The Henceforward

    The Henceforward is a podcast that considers relationships between Indigenous Peoples and Black Peoples on Turtle Island.



  • American Indians in Children's Literature

    Established in 2006 by Dr. Debbie Reese of Nambé Pueblo, American Indians in Children's Literature (AICL) provides critical analysis of Indigenous peoples in children's and young adult books. Dr. Jean Mendoza joined AICL as a co-editor in 2016.


  • IllumiNative

    Created and led by Native peoples, IllumiNative is a new nonprofit initiative designed to increase the visibility of – and challenge the negative narrative about – Native Nations and peoples in American society.

  • Native Arts and Cultures Foundation

    Since its public programming launched in 2010, the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation has engaged in grassroots community organization and outreach to listen to and amplify the voices of the Native arts community.

  • U.S. Department of Arts and Culture

    The U.S. Department of Arts and Culture is a people-powered department — a grassroots action network inciting creativity to shape a culture of empathy, equity, and belonging. Learn more about the USDAC and read our Statement of Values, then join this act of collective imagination!


  • Cultural Survival

    Cultural Survival works toward a future that respects and honors Indigenous Peoples' inherent rights and dynamic cultures, deeply and richly interwoven in lands, languages, spiritual traditions, and artistic expression, rooted in self determination and self-governance.

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