Urge the University of Washington to be Accountable for the Annual First Nations at UW Spring Pow Wow

Res #:Committee:Submitted by:Title:                                 Pass →YesNoAmended/TabledTo NCAI
2020-08EducationPatricia WhitefootUrge the University of Washington to be Accountable for the Annual First Nations at UW Spring Pow Wow

 2020 Winter Convention 

Portland, Oregon 

RESOLUTION #2020 – 08 




We, the members of the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians of the United States, invoking the divine blessing of the Creator upon our efforts and purposes, in order to preserve for ourselves and our descendants rights secured under Indian Treaties, Executive Orders, and benefits to which we are entitled under the laws and constitution of the United States and several states, to enlighten the public toward a better understanding of the Indian people, to preserve Indian cultural values, and otherwise to promote the welfare of the Indian people, do hereby establish and submit the following resolution: 

WHEREAS, the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians (ATNI) are representatives of and advocates for national, regional, and specific tribal concerns; and 

WHEREAS, ATNI is a regional organization comprised of American Indians/Alaska Natives (AI/AN) and tribes in the states of Washington, Idaho, Oregon, Montana, Nevada, Northern California, and Alaska; and 

WHEREAS, the health, safety, welfare, education, economic and employment opportunity, and preservation of cultural and natural resources are primary goals and objectives of the ATNI; and 

WHEREAS, the University of Washington (UW) sits on the occupied land of the Coast Salish peoples; and

WHEREAS, the land on which the UW sits has been the site of potlatches, powwows, coastal jams and many cultural celebrations for millennia; and 

WHEREAS, the United States educational system have continued histories of institutional erasure and cultural genocide; and 

WHEREAS, the increasing inability to engage and practice American Indian/Alaskan Native cultural traditions as a result of the increase of on-campus venue costs and recent decrease of support to host these events is a covert display of institutional erasure; and 

WHEREAS, the First Nations (FN) @ UW Registered Student Organization (RSO) had a now fifty-year tradition of expressing and practicing their cultural identities through powwow at the UW; and 

WHEREAS, the FN@UW Spring Powwow is consistently cited and displayed by the UW for advertising its diversity without acknowledgement or compensation of the students who host this event; and 

WHEREAS, the cost of the annual Spring Powwow has become too great for students to afford; and 

WHEREAS, First Nations students are expected to fundraise without the University Advancement support of $50,000+ currently, and continues to increase annually; now 

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that ATNI urges the UW to be responsible for securing and supporting a venue space in perpetuity on campus for the second weekend of April for American Indian/Alaskan Native students, faculty, staff, community and Indigenous allies to express, practice, and uphold their identity and traditional ways of life; and 

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that ATNI urges higher education institutions to be responsible for understanding and respecting the importance of cultural connection for American Indian/Alaskan Native students on campus; and 

BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, that ATNI urges the UW to be responsible for guaranteeing First Nations @ UW a date and venue for all future FN@UW Spring Powwows as reconciliation for their past negligence. 


The foregoing resolution was adopted at the 2020 Annual Convention of the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, held at DoubleTree by Hilton, Portland, Oregon, on January 27-30, 2020, with a quorum present. 

______________________________ ______________________________ 

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