Introduction | Land Acknowledgement

(Student version and Faculty, Staff & Administrator version)

a screenshot of land acknowledgment in the course

The course begins with a Welcome video that describes key concepts in the course and asks learners to prepare themselves for the course through reflection on a series of questions. Following the Welcome video, there is a territory acknowledgement. Acknowledging the traditional lands of the Indigenous people on which we live, work, and study is an important way to begin a course. Meaningful territory acknowledgements allow learners to develop a closer and deeper relationship with not only the land but the traditional stewards and peoples whose territory they reside, work, live, and prosper in.

Acknowledging the territory within the context of sexual violence training will open a person’s perspective to traditional ways of knowing and being, stepping out of an organizational structure and allowing learners to delve into the their own perceptions, needs and abilities.

When we speak about sexual violence, we cannot do so without highlighting the direct connection to tactics used to colonize and assimilate the Indigenous Peoples of Turtle Island (North America). Sexual violence is intimately intertwined in Indigenous peoples ongoing traumas from colonization; from first contact in North America, to the horrific abuses perpetrated upon children in Residential Schools, the occupation of land and accessing of natural resources without consent, to the forced sterilization of Indigenous women, to the thousands of Indigenous women, girls and Two-Spirit people as victims of sexual or physical violence and death as highlighted by the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls Commission of Canada.

Territory acknowledgements are designed as the very first step to reconciliation. What we do with the knowledge of whose traditional lands we are on is the next important step. If your institution has an approved territory acknowledgement, you are welcome to use it in this section. However, as you continue to develop and use this course in your institution, we invite you to consider how to make the statement more relevant to learners and the course content.


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Safer Campuses for Everyone: Implementation Guide Copyright © 2021 by Sexual Violence Training Development Team is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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