The SRC recognizes that the area now known as UC Irvine is within the traditional ancestral homelands of the Tongva (Gabrielino), Serrano, Fernandeno, Cahuilla, Acjachemen (Juaneno), Luiseno (Payoomkawichum), Ipai, Cupeno, Tipai and Mexican peoples. Additionally, these lands have been shaped by Latino, Japanese, Vietnamese, Filipino, and Chinese laborers who have built roads and railroads and worked California crop fields as well as the African Americans in the Civilian Conservation Corps that helped make (southern) California National Parks what they are today.
A Land Acknowledgement is a formal statement that recognizes and respects Indigenous Peoples as traditional stewards of this land and the enduring relationship that exists between Indigenous Peoples and their traditional territories. Orange County, including the site of UC Irvine, is located on the shared territory of the Acjachemen and Tongva native tribes. Indigenous communities and communities of color, both here in southern California and around the world, are often leading the social movement for environmental balance, economic vitality and social justice. We believe these communities have a lot to teach about this topic. Many of these communities are facing economic disparity and injustice, and do not have access to the land and resources necessary to sustain traditional practices. UCI Community Resilience has been working on various projects to bring attention to this injustice and to create strategies to address it.