The City is located on the traditional territories of the Coast Salish people, specifically the people of the Medicine Creek Treaty (1854), including the Nisqually Indian Tribe and the Squaxin Island Tribe. The City works with the Nisqually Indian Tribe and Squaxin Island Tribe in government-to-government partnerships.
On March 4, 2014, the Lacey City Council and the Nisqually Tribal Council participated in a ceremonial event to sign an historic agreement, The Nisqually Indian Tribe and City of Lacey Accord.The Accord acknowledges the partnership and mutual interests shared between the City and the Nisqually Indian Tribe. It also provides a framework for future meetings and collaboration. As a symbol of the partnership, the Tribe presented the Lacey City Council with a carved totem pole, which is currently displayed in the lobby of Lacey City Hall. A rededication ceremony occurred on July 9, 2015.
Land Acknowledgements are formal statements that recognize, pay tribute to, express gratitude and respect for, affirms the ongoing relationship between indigenous people and the land, and helps raise awareness of the Indigenous histories, perspectives, and experiences —past, present, and future. Land Acknowledgments serve as one element of a broader effort to support Indigenous communities. These acknowledgements are statements recognizing the history and presence of Indigenous peoples and their enduring relationship to traditional homelands. Statements often call attention to treaty rights and historical injustices, while also honoring the modern culture and contributions of Indigenous people.
Land Acknowledgements are rooted in many Indigenous people’s practices and cultural protocols. As described on the Duwamish Tribe webpage:
“It is important to note that this kind of acknowledgement is not a new practice developed by colonial institutions. Land acknowledgement is a traditional custom dating back centuries for many Native communities and nations. For non-Indigenous communities, land acknowledgement is a powerful way of showing respect and honoring the Indigenous Peoples of the land on which we work and live. Acknowledgement is a simple way of resisting the erasure of Indigenous histories and working towards honoring and inviting the truth…”Duwamish Tribe Webpage
The purpose of Land Acknowledgements are commonly to: