Land Acknowledgment Development

The Countywide Cultural Policy provides direction and guidelines for how Los Angeles County and its departments will ensure that every resident has meaningful access to arts and culture. The intent of the policy is to foster an organizational culture that values and celebrates arts, culture, and creativity; strengthens cultural equity and inclusion; and integrates arts and culture in LA County strategies to achieve the highest potential of communities and constituents across all aspects of civic life. The Cultural Policy calls for the County to "identify ways to acknowledge Indigenous Peoples as traditional stewards of this land at County public events and ceremonial functions and celebrate the contributions of culture bearers and traditional arts practices of diverse communities."

Developed over many months of collaboration with leaders from local Tribes, on November 1, 2022, the Board of Supervisors unanimously voted to adopt the following Land Acknowledgment for the County of Los Angeles:

The County of Los Angeles recognizes that we occupy land originally and still inhabited and cared for by the Tongva, Tataviam, Serrano, Kizh, and Chumash Peoples. We honor and pay respect to their elders and descendants -- past, present, and emerging -- as they continue their stewardship of these lands and waters. We acknowledge that settler colonization resulted in land seizure, disease, subjugation, slavery, relocation, broken promises, genocide, and multigenerational trauma. This acknowledgment demonstrates our responsibility and commitment to truth, healing, and reconciliation and to elevating the stories, culture, and community of the original inhabitants of Los Angeles County. We are grateful to have the opportunity to live and work on these ancestral lands. We are dedicated to growing and sustaining relationships with Native peoples and local tribal governments, including (in no particular order) the

Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians
Gabrielino Tongva Indians of California Tribal Council
Gabrieleno/Tongva San Gabriel Band of Mission Indians
Gabrieleño Band of Mission Indians - Kizh Nation
San Manuel Band of Mission Indians
San Fernando Band of Mission Indians

To learn more about the First Peoples of Los Angeles County, please visit the Los Angeles City/County Native American Indian Commission website at

When the Board of Supervisors adopted the Countywide Land Acknowledgment, they also directed Arts and Culture, in collaboration with the LA City/County Native American Indian Commission, to hire a consultant to develop a toolkit and training resources on its use for County departments, municipalities, and cultural entities. Representatives from local Tribes who participated in the process to develop the land acknowledgment, stressed the importance of toolkits and training resources to avoid further harm.

The first set of content is now available. See below for links to toolkits and other resources including Frequently Asked Questions, Glossary of Terms, Pronunciation Guide, and more. More content, including audio clips, videos, and educational resources, will be added in the coming months.

We’d like to extend our sincere thanks to the many tribal representatives and individuals across the County who provided valuable input on these resource materials.

Land Acknowledgment Toolkit & Resources

Explore toolkits, an FAQ, Glossary of Terms, a Pronunciation Guide, and more!

Implementation Guide

Explore this helpful guide on the use of the Countywide Land Acknowledgment. 

Quick Guide

A handy quick guide on the use of the Countywide Land Acknowledgment.

How to Deliver the Land Acknowledgment

A helpful infographic on how to deliver the Countywide Land Acknowledgment. 

  • July 13, 2021: LA County Supervisors Hilda L. Solis and Janice Hahn author a motion to acknowledge and apologize for the historical mistreatment of California Native Americans by Los Angeles County. The motion states, it is "critical that truth-telling begins with the First Peoples of what is now known as the County of Los Angeles, and that the histories and the people who have been intentionally erased are acknowledged and receive official apologies."
  • October 5, 2021: A motion by Supervisor Solis, and co-authored by former Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, directed the Department to partner with the Los Angeles City/County Native American Indian Commission (LANAIC) to hire a consultant to facilitate meetings with local tribal leaders that would lead to the development of a formal Land Acknowledgment for the County.
  • December 28, 2021: After an open solicitation process, Cogstone Resource Management, Inc. is selected to facilitate engagement with tribal leaders and members of the American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) community to create a set of proposals for Land Acknowledgment and Land Access policies, protocols and toolkits for the County. Joining Cogstone in this work is Kearns & West and Avid Core, LLC.
  • November 2021 - June 2022: The LANAIC and Cogstone team conduct extensive outreach to 22 tribal governments, with generally five tribal affiliations, that have ties to the Los Angeles County region, as identified by the State of California Native American Heritage Commission. Six Tribes with traditional lands that intersect with LA County's boundaries express interest in participating in this work. 
  • March 30, 2022: The first of nine facilitated sessions with a working group comprised of designated representatives from six local Tribes takes place. 
  • April 15 - September 30, 2022: Four facilitated sessions with the working group take place, focused on the development of a land acknowledgment, as well as guidelines and best practices for its use. During this process, the LANAIC and Arts and Culture draft a land acknowledgment informed by recommendations, guidance, and information shared during the sessions. 
  • October 4, 2022: Supervisor Solis authors a motion directing the LANAIC and Arts and Culture to return to the Board of Supervisors with a Countywide Land Acknowledgment as soon as it is approved by the LA City/County Native American Indian Commission (LANAIC). At the October 18, 2022 LANAIC Commission meeting, Commissioners approve a recommendation for the LA County Board of Supervisors to adopt the Countywide Land Acknowledgment.
  • November 1, 2022: Supervisors Solis and Janice Hahn introduce a motion calling for the Board of Supervisors to adopt the Land Acknowledgment and that, effective December 1, 2022, the Land Acknowledgment should be verbally announced and displayed visually at the opening of all Board meetings. The motion also instructs the County's Chief Executive Officer to find $150,000 in one-time funding to continue the Land Acknowledgment work as designed in the Cultural Policy, to develop a toolkit and training resources that establish standards and protocols for County departments and agencies.
  • January 10, 2023: The Land Access report is filed with the Board of Supervisors, summarizing input and including recommendations from local Native American Tribes and members of the AIAN community, as well as those who are Indigenous to the Americas. 
  • February 16, 2023: "We Are Still Here," A Report on Past, Present, and Ongoing Harms Against Local Tribes is filed with the Board of Supervisors. This culminating report includes an accounting of the history of the First Peoples of the region, and reflects the thoughts, wishes, needs, and recommendations of representatives from the Fernandeno Tataviam Band of Mission Indians, Gabrieleno/Tongva San Gabriel Band of Mission Indians, Gabrielino Tongva Indians of California Tribal Council, San Fernando Band of Mission Indians, and San Manuel Band of Mission Indians.

In recent years, Los Angeles County has been active in both uplifting the true histories of what is now known as Los Angeles County and prioritizing equity for communities countywide. The inequitable access to County-owned lands for the region’s American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) population negatively impacts their physical, mental, spiritual, emotional, and cultural health. Tribal engagement on these issues at the local level is critical to the development and maintenance of equitable and culturally just local land use policies and procedures that improve access to parks, beaches, recreational waters, public lands, and public spaces for AIAN people to observe cultural, traditional, and religious practices.

In fall 2021, the County, through the LA City/County Native American Indian Commission and the LA County Department of Arts and Culture, embarked on a process to gather input that will update its understanding of the history of the region’s First Peoples and the harms that have been perpetuated to advance truth, healing, and transformation, and to gather input on the development of a formal land acknowledgment for the County, the latter of which is anticipated to be completed by the end of 2022.

Our aim is to counter the destructive "doctrine of discovery" with true stories of the people who were already here and to actively engage in repairing relationships and restorative collaboration with Native communities.

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