Territorial Acknowledgement

En français

I/We would like to begin by acknowledging that Concordia University is located on unceded Indigenous lands. The Kanien’kehá:ka Nation is recognized as the custodians of the lands and waters on which we gather today. Tiohtià:ke/Montréal is historically known as a gathering place for many First Nations. Today, it is home to a diverse population of Indigenous and other peoples. We respect the continued connections with the past, present and future in our ongoing relationships with Indigenous and other peoples within the Montreal community.


Throughout our history, Concordia has sustained relationships with Indigenous peoples and communities on the Island of Tiohtià:ke or Montréal and its surrounding area. The Concordia Indigenous Directions Leadership Group is currently developing a history section on the Indigenous Directions Hub to depict and celebrate many of the occasions and collaborations that we have shared. The following is a brief history and explanation of the Territorial Acknowledgment upon which we hope to build.

The Concordia community has developed many versions of Territorial Acknowledgements, practices, and gestures that continue to foster meaningful and respectful relationships with Indigenous community members, knowledge keepers, and collaborative partners. The Territorial Acknowledgement that we are practicing today is grounded in that history. Many members of Concordia’s staff, faculty, students, and community partners have made a contribution to the discussion, wording, and rationale behind it. Our Acknowledgement is built from cumulative efforts of many minds from diverse backgrounds and we hope to keep an on-going dialogue with all of our stakeholders.

How and why we worded the Acknowledgement this way, line by line

This specific version of the Territorial Acknowledgement was primarily authored by Wahéhshon Shiann Whitebean and Dr. Karl S. Hele, with significant contributions at the final stages from Dr. Louellyn White. The final draft was agreed upon unanimously and passed by the Indigenous Directions Leadership Group on February 16, 2017.

Spring Convocation ceremonies in 2017 included a Territorial Acknowledgement at the start of the proceedings, stated publicly by a lead member of Concordia’s administration. The Indigenous Directions Leadership Group will continue to work with the Convocation planning committees and Concordia’s administration to modify and adapt future convocation ceremonies in a way that includes and supports Indigenous identities, cultures, and languages. Our goal is to develop an inclusive and open environment for all Concordia students, staff, faculty, and community members. Concordia also supports the choice of any Indigenous peoples to wear regalia/cultural dress at Convocation ceremonies in addition to or as an alternative to formal academic attire.

When and where to deliver the Territorial Acknowledgement

Who to acknowledge

How to deliver the Territorial Acknowledgement

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