A formal acknowledgment recognizing Native peoples and their relationships to the land on which our institution resides.
KU Medical Center Kansas City Land Acknowledgment
Throughout the United States' history, maps of Native nations and territories are often historically misrepresented and incomplete. History books and the borders illustrated on western maps often exclude migration, rich oral histories, sacred sites and colonialism survival stories for our Native people.
As a step toward reconciliation, the University of Kansas Medical Center acknowledges that KU Medical Center resides on the traditional homelands of several tribal nations, including the Kiikaapoi (Kickapoo), Washtáge Moⁿzháⁿ (Kaw/Kansa), 𐓏𐒰𐓓𐒰𐓓𐒷 𐒼𐓂𐓊𐒻 𐓆𐒻𐒿𐒷 𐓀𐒰^𐓓𐒰^ (Osage), Očhéthi Šakówiŋ (Dakota, Lakota, Nakota), Shawnee and Waⁿdát (Wandat/Wyandot/Wyandotte/Huron) peoples.
In addition, we recognize, advocate and support the sovereignty of the four federally recognized tribes who have reservations in Kansas, the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation, the Kickapoo Tribe in Kansas, the Sac and Fox Nation of Missouri in Kansas and Nebraska and the Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska.
Consistent with KU Medical Center's commitment to creating and maintaining a diverse, equitable and inclusive learning and working environment that nurtures the growth and development of our learners, employees, patients and community partners, KU Medical Center honors the traditions, histories and contributions of all Native American communities.
About Our Land Acknowledgment
What is a land acknowledgment?
According to the American College Personnel Association, “A land acknowledgment is a formal statement that recognizes and respects Indigenous Peoples as traditional stewards of this land and the enduring relationship that exists between Indigenous Peoples and their traditional territories.” Read a guide to Indigenous land acknowledgments, provided by the Native Governance Center.
What is the motivation for KU Medical Center's acknowledgment?
As an educational institution, we have an ethical obligation to create truthful and factual representations and should respect and recognize Native peoples and their relationships to the land on which our institution resides.
What is the purpose of KU Medical Center's acknowledgment?
- To acknowledge the displacement of Native peoples and the devastating effects forced relocation has on Native communities.
- To promote tribal learning and tribal sovereignty through an equity and justice lens.
- To reconcile in T.R.U.T.H. (Transcendent, Resilient, Uplifting, Transforming, HistoryMakers) the history and resilience of Native people and communities.
- To honor the sacred history of the land on which our KU Medical Center community works, learns and heals.
What is Next?
Land acknowledgments alone are not enough. KU Medical Center promotes the actionable advocacy to foster reconciliation, repair and decolonize false histories by the following:
- Building relationships with Native American communities to understand the geographic, social and cultural histories of the people and land where KU Medical Center campuses reside.
- Working alongside Native American communities to foster reconciliation and reinvestment through advocacy, community service, academic and research pursuits and diverse recruitment and retention.
- Increasing awareness and access to care for Native American communities to reduce health disparities and disproportionate diseases affecting life quality and expectancy.
- Honoring and decolonizing history through recognition and public sharing of KU Medical Center's Land Acknowledgment.
For more information, or to join us in advocacy, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
"As a Native American person, our history and existence is often overlooked and forgotten. A land acknowledgment is an important first step in recognizing that the Native American people and culture are still in existence. My hope is this act will lead to support and advocacy for current and future generations of indigenous persons."- Rachel DiTeresi, M.D.
References and Resources
Discover helpful resources related to land acknowledgments and the history of this region long before it became known as Kansas. Explore community programs and events and stories to continue building awareness and recognition of Native people in our state.