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Indigenous Peoples' Day Initiative

A burgeoning national collaboration spearheaded by The Pocahontas Project  working to inspire the United States of America and its Territories to embrace the second Monday in October as a celebration of Indigenous Peoples’ Day

What is the Indigenous Peoples' Day Initiative?

An idea first discussed at a United Nations conference in 1977 became reality on October 10, 1992, 500 years after the “discovery” of America by Christopher Columbus in 1492, when the first Indigenous Peoples’ Day celebration was held in the United States as an alternative to the holiday named Columbus Day. More than thirty years later that monumental break from tradition has become a movement as a growing number of states and cities have legislatively embraced the celebration of Indigenous Peoples’ Day on the second Monday in October.

10 States + the District of Columbia have passed IPD legislation:

  • South Dakota (1989) > Native American Day

  • Alaska (2017) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

  • Maine (2019) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

  • New Mexico (2019) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

  • Vermont (2019) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

  • Wisconsin (2019) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

  • District of Columbia (2019) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

  • Oregon (2021) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

  • Texas (2021) > Indigenous Peoples’ Week (second week in October)

  • Hawaii (2023) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

  • Minnesota (2023) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day

3 States have passed IPD legislation and kept Columbus Day:

  • Alabama (2000) > American Indian Heritage Day and Columbus Day

  • Oklahoma (2019) > Native American Day and Columbus Day

  • Nebraska (2020) > Indigenous Peoples’ Day and Columbus Day

3 States’ Governors offered IPD Proclamations in 2023:

  • California

  • Michigan

  • North Carolina

100+ American Cities have passed IPD legislation, including:

  • Alexandria, Charlottesville, Falls Church and Richmond, Virginia

  • Atlanta, Georgia / Baltimore, Maryland / Berkeley, California / Boston, Massachusetts / Columbus, Ohio / Denver, Colorado / Detroit, Michigan / Houston, Texas / Los Angeles, California / Minneapolis, Minnesota / Phoenix, Arizona / Portland, Oregon / St. Louis, Missouri / San Francisco, California / Seattle, Washington

IPD Initiative Letters of Support

The Pocahontas Project (TPP) believes this a Kairos moment, the right and opportune time in 2024 to complete the IPD reorientation in all jurisdictions across the country, including and especially the United States Congress. TPP is confident the holiday restart will invest and involve Americans in celebrating the history and culture of America’s Indigenous Peoples, unleashing significant pent up interest and support for the future of America’s Indigenous communities, a unique collection of global cultural complexity, including:

  • 574 Federally Recognized American Indian Tribes

  • The Kanaka Maoli of Hawaii

  • The Alaska Natives

  • The indigenous peoples of America’s Territories:

    • American Samoa

    • Guam + the Northern Mariana Islands

    • Puerto Rico

    • US Minor Outlying Islands

    • US Virgin Islands

 

The IPD Initiative is not just a name change – it is about establishing national pride in a national holiday, collective pride that will help to unify the USA offering a positive look forward, with special attention to our youth, the future leaders of the world.

Statue of Pocahontas in Gloucester, 

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