White House hosts first Tribal Nations Summit since 2016

Collaborator: Brittany Harlow
Published: 11/15/2021, 3:21 PM
Edited: 11/17/2021, 6:10 PM

(NATIONAL) The White House hosted the first summit of tribal nations in five years this week. 

The summit took place virtually Monday and Tuesday from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Eastern Time. 

President Joe Biden announced steps to improve public safety and justice for Native Americans during the first day of the event.

This included the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) jointly releasing a new memorandum that commits to elevating Indigenous Traditional Ecological Knowledge (ITEK) in federal scientific and policy processes. 

Officials said ITEK is "a body of observations, oral and written knowledge, practices, and beliefs that promotes environmental sustainability and the responsible stewardship of natural resources through relationships between humans and environmental systems". 

Policy panels during the summit included the following sessions: 

Combating COVID-19 

Native American Education and Native Languages 

Public Safety and Justice 

Climate Change Impacts and Solutions 

Tribal Treaty Rights and Sacred Lands 

Economic and Workforce Development 

Infrastructure, Housing and Energy  

Listening Session with Federal Officials

574 federally recognized tribes are said to have taken part. 

Click here for the summit agenda. 

Updated to include information about ITEK.


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