April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 50

PROTECTING THE LAND

P&R: Stephanie, could you share
any insights around activists,
activism and advocacy within the
Ho-Chunk Nation?
Lozano: One of the things that we had
going on here [in Wisconsin] about
five years ago, was some pending legislation regarding a piece of land that
had to do with our burial mounds in
Madison. And so, it [was something]
to see...the people come down to the
capital and start advocating against
that legislation to support the land and
our heritage. Those mounds are really
connected to who we are as a people.
We were one of the only mound builders in the area. And, there's a company that had purchased some land that
had a mound and had been slowly
destroying that mound because there
were a lot of minerals and rocks buried within it that were quite valuable.

" Here in Wisconsin, our governor
has really stood up and challenged
every single cabinet agency to
do better in terms of our tribal
consultation and making sure that
we are putting tribal voices at the
front of development versus an
afterthought. "
It's been really nice to just watch
and learn and be able to just share
that with folks who don't know the
history. They don't know what's going on. When nobody's out there promoting or sharing the information,
it's kind of up to us to educate each
other - even one or two people at a
time. They go out and they tell another couple of people. And before you
know it, there's an entire movement.
P&R: Moving to today, the current
administration has pledged to
put equity at the center of its
50	 Parks & Recreation

governing policies. And looking
at the needs of tribal nations,
as they relate to health and
well-being and land and water
conservation, what does real
equity look like to you?
Lozano: For me, there's a few different types of equity. There's an equity in practice, but there's also equity
in consequences. So tribal activists
often face harsher consequences
than activists from other groups;
people of color, in particular. And
I think we're seeing that play out in
some of the more recent historical
events...who goes to jail or who
gets charged and who gets kept in
jail, who can make bail - that type
of thing. I think it's really important
to make sure that everybody is held
to the same standard when we're
standing up for what we believe in.
There's also equity in policy,
which looks a lot like what we're
doing here in Wisconsin, in terms
of having a robust consultation policy with tribes and making sure that
the leadership understands why it's
important to consult with tribes.
Here in Wisconsin, our governor
has really stood up and challenged
every single cabinet agency to do
better in terms of our tribal consultation and making sure that we are
putting tribal voices at the front of
development versus an afterthought.
So, one of the things that we've been
using as a metaphor is: in state government, we tend to bake a lot of
cakes for our stakeholders. We develop a policy or a program and we
do all of the work here at the capital.
And then we take it out to all of our
stakeholder groups and say, " Look
at this beautiful cake; look at what
we made you. Don't you love it? "
But we have no idea if somebody
has an allergy to gluten, or my personal favorite is, " I like whipped
cream frosting, not buttercream.

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How would you know that unless
you asked me? " And so, consultation to me is about picking the ingredients together - looking at that recipe and figuring out what's going to
work for everybody that [is] impacted versus coming at me with cake
that I might not like. Or, you might
have to change [the recipe] because
you didn't talk to me ahead of time.
Sinclair: There's a movement now to
repatriate land.... And, I know a lot of
people get scared hearing the phrase
'land back,' because they think that it
means Indigenous nations are asking
for everything back. Of course, that's
not what it actually means. What it
means in the United States is finding
some of the public lands to give back
to Indigenous nations, [but] it also
means things in different urban contexts. There are organizations...like
Oakland's (California) Indigenous
women-led Sogorea Te' Land Trust
(sogoreate-landtrust.org). It's funded
by local residents and businesses who
voluntarily pay them a land tax for living on Ohlone land. The organization
has these three plots of land for the
local Indigenous community to cultivate traditional medicinal plants, to
practice urban farming and to provide
space for ceremony. And one of those
plots, a quarter-acre site, was gifted
by a non-Indigenous organization,
Planting Justice (plantingjustice.org),
after they returned from Standing
Rock and asked how they could support Indigenous people in Oakland.
So, it's a lot about thinking about how
to give back land and also how to
share land in different ways.
P&R: How can park and recreation
agencies and other local government
agencies support some of this work?
Lozano: I think what we see here
locally in Wisconsin is a real partnership with local government and


http://www.sogoreate-landtrust.org http://www.plantingjustice.org

April 2021 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of April 2021 - Parks & Recreation

April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - Cover1
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April 2021 - Parks & Recreation - 1
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https://ezine.nrpa.org/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2022
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