Participating in a land acknowledgement is a reminder that we are all treaty people and therefore accountable to these relationships.
A territorial or land acknowledgement involves making a statement recognizing the traditional territory of the Indigenous people(s) who called the land home before the arrival of settlers, and in many cases still do call it home. Indigenous peoples have been acknowledging the land at the start of gatherings, ceremonies and events since time immemorial. Providing a land acknowledgement gives time for reflection and demonstrates recognition of Indigenous lands, treaties and peoples.
QT acknowledges the land on which we organize is the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples and is now home to many diverse First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. We also acknowledge that Toronto is covered by Treaty 13 with the Mississaugas of the Credit. Toronto is in the 'Dish With One Spoon Territory’ in what is now southern Ontario, from the Great Lakes to Quebec and from Lake Simcoe into the United States. We all eat out of the Dish, all of us that share this territory, with only one spoon. That means we have to share the responsibility of ensuring the dish is never empty, which includes taking care of the land and the creatures we share it with.
We are settlers here on Tkaronto (Toronto), which is situated in the larger Turtle Island (North America). It is important to keep this constantly in our minds so that we can move forward actively resisting neocolonialism in all of its forms and manifestations.
Watch Elder Duke Redbird recite his poem, “A Dish with One Spoon" in this clip from Myseum of Toronto’s “Ask an Elder” program.
For more information about the history or geography of Turtle Island and its peoples, visit https://native-land.ca/