The New York City Commission on Human Rights (“Commission”) acknowledges the land politically designated as New York City to be the homeland of the Lenape (Lenapehoking) who were violently displaced as a result of European settler colonialism over the course of 400 years. The Lenape are a diasporic people that remain closely connected with this land and are its rightful stewards. We also recognize that New York City has one of the largest urban Native American / Indigenous populations in the United States.
The Commission acknowledges its role in not centering Native American / Indigenous voices in our work in the past, and as a result has not appropriately addressed the needs of the communities and their experiences with discrimination. This dynamic exists within the broader context of ruptured relationships between Native American / Indigenous communities and municipal governments, resulting from centuries of state-sanctioned genocide.
The Commission is committed to forging a new trajectory for our agency by building sustainable relationships with Lenape and other Native American / Indigenous peoples. We are actively engaging Native American / Indigenous leaders as equal partners in collaboration, fostering a space that prioritizes their voices to direct our services in ways that best serve citizens of these nations / members of these communities.