Truth and Healing Council

On June 18, 2019, Governor Gavin Newsom issued Executive Order N-15-19, which:

  • Formally apologizes for atrocities committed by the State of California against California Native Americans in the early days of statehood;
  • Reaffirms and incorporates by reference the principles of government-to-government consultation required by Executive Order B-10-11; and
  • Requires the Governor's Tribal Advisor to establish and convene a "Truth and Healing Council," which will be responsible for examining and producing a written report of the historical relationship between California Native Americans and the State from the Native perspective.
    • The Council must be composed of California tribal representatives and/or delegates.
    • This Council must produce its final report on or before January 1, 2025.

The Office of the Tribal Advisor seeks input to assist in: (i) determining the makeup of the Council, (ii) creating a framework for the Council to begin examining the historical relationship between California Native Americans and the State and (iii) establishing the issue areas to be examined by the Council.
The Truth and Healing Council will be the first entity of its kind tasked with such an expansive and broad-based undertaking; thus, tribal input is critical to ensure that California tribal governments and broader California Native American population drive the creation and work of the Council.
My office will facilitate in-person and web-based tribal consultation throughout the fall to create the structure and framework of the Council, which will tentatively convene for its first meeting in January 2020.

To assist you in developing recommendations, below is a (non-exclusive) list of questions to guide the establishment of the Council:

  • How should the Truth and Healing Council be structured? A large body of all tribes like the United Nations, a small panel with subcommittees to ensure a targeted approach or something entirely different?
  • How should members of the Truth and Healing Council be appointed? What should their qualifications be?
  • Are there proven models you recommend that the Council adopt or model?
  • Are there Native resources / scholars you recommend working with to inform the creation and work of the Council?
  • Are there other supplementary materials that should be made available to the Council?
  • What do you hope the Council will achieve throughout this process and what result will be most useful for tribal governments and California Native Americans? What does success look like for this Council?
  • How often and where should the Council meet?
  • How should the Council accept information into the record for its report?
  • What issue areas should the Council examine?

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