New York City, New York
We, the Members of the Human Family speak as one, guided by the sacred teachings and spiritual traditions of the Four Directions that uplift, guide, protect, warn, inspire and challenge the entire Human Family to live in ways that sustain and enhance human life and the lives of all who dwell on Mother Earth, and hereby dedicate our lives and energies to healing and developing ourselves, the web of relationships that make our world and the way we live with Mother Earth.
The spiritual foundation of the Indigenous world-view based on the ancient understanding of the fundamental oneness and unity of all life. Recognizes all members of the Human Family are a part of the Sacred Circle of Life. Since all members of the Human Family are a part of the Sacred Circle of Life, we are all Indigenous Peoples of our Mother Earth. Therefore, every Human Being is responsible for the well-being of one another and all living things on our Mother Earth.
Whether or not the nation-states, multinational corporations or international development agencies that surround us are willing or able to participate with us at this time, our Indigenous Peoples and Allies of the Human Family are moving dynamically forward in rebuilding and reunifying the Americas and beyond!
Our actions and vision, guided by the Natural Laws and Guiding Principles, inherent in our Indigenous Worldview and Legal Order, are based on an eternal, spiritually enduring foundation. Also:
1. We have the ancient prophecies and the clear vision of a future of social justice and collective prosperity for the Americas, and beyond that, we are in the process of manifesting. This new global civilization that is unfolding, as promised by the Ancient Ones and the Ancient of Days, fully honors the Natural Laws and Rights of Mother Earth and the Unity and Diversity of our Human Family. This New Spiritual Springtime foretold by our Elders is now unfolding globally as sure as the sun rises every morning.
2. We have always had a strong, enduring and unbreakable spiritual foundation of cultural values and guiding principles that have empowered us to survive and arise, with higher strength and wisdom than ever, despite great spiritual wintertime. Even though this long, spiritual winter, filled with the utmost human cruelty, violence, injustice, abuse, and physical and cultural genocide we have never surrendered our inherent sovereignty! Despite these long suffered challenges, throughout the Americas and around Mother Earth, our Indigenous Peoples are reawakening to their spiritual and cultural identities and are healing our Sacred Relationships between ourselves, Mother Earth and all members of the Human Family.
3. Together, our Indigenous Peoples and Allies of our Human Family have the cultural, spiritual, scientific, technological, social, environmental, economic and agricultural capacities and wisdom needed to co-create and rebuild our Families, Tribes, and Nations stronger and more unified than ever before.
4. Our Indigenous Peoples of Mother Earth have the growing collective social and economic capital, coupled with vast natural resources, to bring our highest dreams and visions to reality. With growing collective strength, we are dedicated to protecting and restoring our Beloved Mother as the sacred heritage of all generations, yet to come! Furthermore, it is crystal clear that these collective resources will empower us to become a primary spiritual and economic force, not only in the Americas but also throughout Mother Earth. We are destined to play an ever-increasing role as global leaders in wisely mandating the sustainable and harmonious ways for developing Mother Earth's gifts and resources! We will ensure that when the development of the natural resources of Mother Earth is not sustainable, no matter the profit, they will not be developed! Our Sacred Places and the Healthful Life of our Beloved Mother Earth are not for sale and exploitation for any price!
5. We, the Indigenous Peoples of the Eagle of the North have the material resources to support the development of the collective resources of our Indigenous Relatives of the Quetzal and Condor of the South, as they choose. The Quetzal and Condor of the South equally have critical resources to share with the Eagle of the North. Our greatest strength fully realizes our spiritual and cultural unity.
6. Through utilizing emerging digital communications and green technologies in harmony with our vast, collective social, economic, cultural and spiritual capacities, we will manifest a future with social, environmental, and economic justice for all members of the Human Family and our Beloved Mother Earth!
7. The primary challenge that stands before us as Indigenous Peoples and as a Human Family, in rebuilding the Americas, and beyond, is disunity. This disunity caused by all forms of colonialism, injustice, and genocide, is a direct result of the three Papal Bulls of 1452-1493 and the resulting Doctrine of Discovery. This on-going colonization, prejudice, and genocide have resulted in unresolved intergenerational trauma, internalized oppression and other deepening global suffering and injustice. We are committed to fully and justly recognize, address, heal, and reconcile by every peaceful and legal manner possible, the extremes of wealth and poverty. These extremes of wealth and poverty were caused by the Papal Bulls of 1452-1493 and resulting Doctrine of Discovery.
As we move courageously and wisely forward, in greater and greater love, compassion, justice, and unity, we are reconnecting to our enduring and solid spiritual and cultural foundation for healing, reconciliation and collective action for Protecting and Restoring the Sacred everywhere on Mother Earth. With the full realization of our spiritual and cultural foundations for prayerful, wise, unprecedented and unified action, our ultimate victory will gracefully and assuredly unfold at the right times and places, as foretold by our Ancient Ones.
With the full understanding of these unshakable, spiritual and cultural foundations, we entirely dedicate ourselves and our resources to realize these unprecedented, unified actions to stop runaway climate change:
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to Protecting and Restoring the Sacred. We will remind ourselves and our Human Family, through our sacred prayers, songs, ceremony and our ancient prophecies, that Mother Earth is our holy provider of life, not a limitless dump for our waste here only to satisfy our appetite for the material dimension of life. Restoring the Sacred includes preserving and protecting sacred sites worldwide and returning holy heirloom objects taken from their rightful owners. We will return to these sacred sites and objects to their original cultural and spiritual purposes.
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to supporting the global emergence of the Seventh Generation, as promised, by fostering youth participation, leadership, and wisdom in all decision-making processes impacting all life on Mother Earth.
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to reducing consumption: This reduction of consumption must start in the wealthy nations, among the wealthy and comfortable, to restore the values of simplicity and humility. Our Human Family can live much happier and more rewarding lives with less consumption of Mother Earth’s body and energy.
We, the Members of the Human Family commit, to protecting women’s rights to stabilize human population: we’ve grown past Mother Earth’s capacity, and our human society cannot keep growing. Our ancient relatives knew that their communities had to fit their habitat. Natural patterns of creation practiced resulted in extended families in balance with the natural world. Today, over a billion of our Human Family are hungry daily, and 10 million of these relatives starve to death every year. We must stabilize the population of our Human Family. It’s essential to ensure women everywhere have equal rights and respect. Wherever women have rights over their reproduction, and where contraception is freely available, the birth rate naturally declines. Universal education, social justice, and ecological justice allow communities to limit their population growth.
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to transitioning to sustainable and renewable energy sources. We will take every peaceful action possible to reduce and eliminate hydrocarbon energy use — coal, oil, gas — and build the renewable energy infrastructure: solar, wind, and hydropower, where acceptable and approved through a process of free, prior and informed consent. Conservation will be an essential part of any genuine energy transition, using power modestly and carefully, to minimize consumption, including eliminating any natural resource extraction projects like the Alberta Tar Sands.
Nation states everywhere on Mother Earth need to remove all taxes and tariffs on solar technology and other proven alternative energy sources. Also, nation-states must increase carbon taxes, eliminate subsidies to the petroleum industry, and use those revenues to subsidize renewable energy research and installation.
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to restoring natural ecological function on a planetary scale by reversing the decline of forests, coral reefs, wetlands and other productive ecosystems. Replanting, restoring and protecting the wild woods to provide natural species diversity to grow again, and to supply human communities with materials and energy for modest lives connected to productive living systems. To achieve this, we require a paradigm shift in economics, a change from growth and extraction to the preservation of the real wealth: our natural ecosystems. Rather than attempt to monetize nature, we must do the opposite and naturalize the economy.
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to permitting only organic and traditional farming by ending the industrial farming methods that have destroyed soils and spread toxins throughout our environment. To Indigenous Peoples, organic agriculture is conventional agriculture.
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to building a robust infrastructure for public transportation by eliminating the overuse of cars and restore efficient public transportation systems, light-rail, electric trains, and trolleys. We will rebuild our communities so people can access their needs by walking and bicycling.
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to waging peace with the understanding that war is the highest consumer of oil and energy, the most significant contributor to ecological destruction and the most destructive force among the Human Family. War benefits only the powerful, the wealthy and the weapons industry. We will make peace a global priority, refuse to fund war machines, refuse to participate in war-making and stop glorifying war. We call to eliminate the weapons industry that lives off the misery of the victims among our relatives. The realization of world peace, established on the full spiritual awareness of the Oneness of the Human Family, will eliminate prejudice in all forms, including anything that causes a human being or society to feel superior to another.
We, the Members of the Human Family, committed to restoring, promoting and protecting the rights of Indigenous Peoples. Industrial economies have consistently pushed Indigenous communities from their productive land. By restoring the rights of all Indigenous communities, indeed of all members of the Human Family, who know how to live in harmony with the natural world, we take an essential step forward towards healing our Mother Earth. This commitment includes the full legal implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, with particular emphasis on the principle of free, prior and informed consent!
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to cleaning up and redeveloping toxic waste sites. All Nation States and Multinational Corporations responsible for generating poisonous waste - including nuclear, petroleum, chemical, agricultural and any other toxic waste - must immediately develop and implement a global plan to eliminate those toxins from all ecosystems, air, land, and water, by 2020.
We the Members of the Human Family, commit to implementing universal gender equality by realizing that the full equality of women and men is a prerequisite of peace. The denial of such equality is an injustice against half of the world’s population and promotes harmful attitudes and habits among men, from the family to the workplace, into political life and international relations. Ultimately, any gender discrimination, including gender violence, leads directly to a destructive relationship with Mother Earth. There are no grounds — moral, practical or biological — that this can be justified. Only when women and men have the full equal partnership, in all fields of human endeavor, will we be able to create the moral and psychological climate to realize fully international peace.
We, the Members of the Human Family commit, to facilitating decision-making by leaders so that decisions remain beneficial for seven generations into the future, a policy known by Indigenous people as "Seven Generations" decision-making. In the Ihanktonwan Dakota Traditions, the thirteenth tepee pole is the women's pole, around which the hide or canvas is tightly wrapped. After erecting the first twelve poles, the thirteenth pole is lifted into place, and the skin of the tipi is unwrapped around the others, covering all. Without this pole, of course, there is no shelter. Scientific evidence shows that the toxic pollution of industrial culture is poisoning the wombs of womankind, infecting our future generations, causing disease, diabetes, obesity, birth defects, cancers and chemical violence. These toxins are breaking the thirteenth pole, harming our women and all women, endangering unborn children so that there may not be the seventh generation. Making decisions to generate money rather than maintaining the health of all members of our Human Family is the opposite of Seventh Generation decisions.
We, the Members of the Human Family commit, to establishing and maintaining Bioregional Marine Sanctuaries throughout Mother Earth, as soon as possible. Bioregional Marine Sanctuaries are named areas of Earth, Water and Air where natural animal populations are protected and restored to more than 50% of historic levels as soon as possible, and water quality and forest biomass levels are preserved and restored to very high concentrations. Bioregional Marine Sanctuary boundaries correspond to natural features such as watershed topography, vegetation types, oceanic continental shelves, and margins. All rivers, creeks, lakes, ponds, estuaries and, aquifers included.
We, the members of the Human Family, commit to reducing the large-scale farming of animals. The role of animal agriculture in climate change has been ignored during climate conferences despite livestock being the world’s leading emitter of methane. Further, the increased demand for raising animals for human consumption is resulting in the destruction of both our rainforests and also the rural land many of our brothers and sisters call home, causing human rights abuses, poverty, and violence. We will hold the factory farming industry and the governments who shelter them with laws accountable for these tragedies, and we will play our part in protecting Mother Earth from further destruction.
We, the Members of the Human Family, commit to holding governments and corporations responsible for making genuine progress to solve the growing challenge of Climate Change. Historically, after 21 years of climate conferences, governments and corporations have accomplished nothing to address the climate challenge and have, in fact, subsidized the petroleum energy industry that increases climate change. While we will hold governments and corporations responsible for making genuine progress, we will not rely on them to restore the harmony and balance of life. The majority of the work to protect and restore the sacredness of life remains with every one of us.
We call all members of Human Family of Mother Earth, including, all levels of non-Indigenous and Indigenous governments, citizen organizations, businesses, labor unions, non-governmental organizations and third parties to recognize, support and uphold this International Treaty to Protect and Restore Mother Earth. We invite you to signify your commitment by signing the Addendum to this International Treaty.
Signed on Mother Earth Day, April 22, 2016, New York City, by Indigenous leaders from across the Americas and Indonesia.