If you’ve already registered for the ACRL WA Conference, you may have noticed that conference fees are slightly higher this year. We’ve raised registration costs by $10 for all registration types as part of our conference land acknowledgment. As a settler-led organization that continually uses colonized land to hold our conferences, we are committed to making our land acknowledgement tangible by donating conference funds to the original and present-day stewards of the land.
The Washington conference is typically held at the Pack Forest conference center near Eatonville, on traditional lands of the Puyallup and Nisqually Tribes. In particular, the area where we are holding our conference is “deeply significant in tribal history and culture” for the Nisqually. The Nisqually Parks Department has been working with the University of Washington and Washington State Parks to make the Nisqually presence and history more known to non-Indigenous users of this area (for example, through the ongoing partnership to create and develop Nisqually State Park). We will be using a portion of your conference registration fees to make a donation to the Nisqually Parks Department. We want to thank David Iyall, Nisqually Tribal Council Treasurer, for taking the time to share the significance of this area with us and suggesting the Nisqually Parks Department as an appropriate place for a donation.
Land acknowledgements and donations only mean so much without relationships. Historically ACRL WA has not had a relationship with tribal leaders or with the history of the land in which we hold the conference. Changing our payment structure to include a donation to the Nisqually Parks Department is a start to an ongoing effort we will be making to learn about the land and acknowledge the ways that our presence as an organization and as individuals continues to impact Indigenous people.