Today, Governor Gavin Newsom issued a proclamation declaring October 9, 2023, as Indigenous Peoples’ Day in the State of California.
The text of the proclamation and a copy can be found below:
For the fifth year in a row, the State of California proclaims today as Indigenous Peoples’ Day, recognizing the integral role of Indigenous peoples in the origins, evolution and future of this state. Home to the largest and most diverse population of Indigenous peoples prior to European contact, California inherits a rich, Indigenous cultural legacy while bearing the responsibility of its historical role in the near-destruction of California Native peoples through their violent dislocation. Now, as we continue our journey toward atonement for those actions, we must learn from our mistakes by fostering a California that is safe, sustainable and embraces all.
Humankind as a whole currently finds itself in a battle to survive the existential threats of climate change, income inequality and cultural unrest, and nowhere is this more starkly felt than in Indigenous communities across the globe. These stressors are not only changing the world more rapidly than we can process or address, they are rendering the ancestral homelands of many virtually uninhabitable. It is our charge then, when these conditions persist, to call upon our core human values and welcome those who can no longer sustain their lives, liberties and happiness in the places they hold most dear.
As Indigenous peoples gather today at Alcatraz to honor their relationship with the land and commemorate those who have fought for collective Native rights, we celebrate the community of Indigenous peoples in California who continue to lead the way in expanding cultural expression, climate action and restorative justice for all. We are living in a unique moment of cultural resurgence for Native and Indigenous peoples across the state, with historic movements in food sovereignty; culturally-informed wellness; ancestral land stewardship and climate adaptation; Native-led storytelling, public arts and filmmaking; and Indigenous language access and revitalization.
We are all stronger when we work toward a common cause, and California stands firmly as an ally to Indigenous peoples, tribal nations and Native communities as we collectively work toward an equitable, sustainable and vibrant future rooted in our common humanity.
In that spirit, today we again disclaim the celebration of conquest whose legacy continues to displace and degrade the original peoples of this land, instead calling on Californians to embrace and celebrate the excellence and dignity of Indigenous peoples everywhere.
NOW THEREFORE I, GAVIN NEWSOM, Governor of the State of California, do hereby proclaim October 9, 2023, as “Indigenous Peoples’ Day.”
Governor of California
SHIRLEY N. WEBER, Ph.D.
Secretary of State