Land Acknowledgement (Abbreviated Version)
The California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC) acknowledges, respects and thanks the original and present day Indigenous people of this land, whose sacred ties are forever enduring. CalSWEC is committed to holding ourselves and social workers accountable to respecting Indigenous values, culture, families and communities through the ways in which we practice, educate, and support the field of social work.
The California Social Work Education Center (CalSWEC) acknowledges the physical space it occupies at UC Berkeley sits on the territory of xučyun (Huichin), the ancestral and unceded land of the Chochenyo speaking Ohlone people, the successors of the sovereign Verona Band of Alameda County. This land was and continues to be of great importance to the Muwekma Ohlone Tribe and other familial descendants of the Verona Band. CalSWEC acknowledges its work impacts individuals, communities, lands, and the ecosystems across the state of California, which is home to close to 200 Indigenous tribes.
We recognize that all communities across the state have, and continue to benefit from, the use and occupation of this land and waters. As contributors to California’s ecological and social communities, it is vitally important that we not only recognize the history of the land on which we stand, but also, we recognize that Indigenous communities are alive and flourishing.
Although it is important to acknowledge the land, it is only a first step. We are all responsible and accountable for learning about and understanding the violence that Indigenous people and communities face. Allyship is a continuous process; it is also not a label one can give themselves but is demonstrated from our actions and commitment to standing in solidarity. CalSWEC is committed to working to hold ourselves and social workers accountable to these values through the ways in which we practice, educate, and support the field of social work. Our work must actively reflect these values in daily manifestations of the ways social work programs are defined, evaluated, and delivered.
We encourage all social workers, social work leaders and educators, and their organizations to speak out in deference to the lands they occupy in an effort to honor the ancestral territories that have been buried under centuries of colonization and development, with an eye to recognizing the Indigenous tribes who are the original and ongoing stewards of these lands. Visit this link to look up the differing tribal names based on their associations with your location. Utilizing language such as, “We acknowledge, respect and thank the Indigenous peoples who were the original occupants of this land and whose sacred ties are forever enduring” is a powerful mechanism to center justice and respect the history, ecology, and cultures of our environments.
Portions of this land acknowledgment were adapted from the land acknowledgment that was co-created with the Muwekma Ohlone Tribe and the UC Berkeley Native American Student Development, as well as Laurier Students' Public Interest Research Group.