Revisit Our History: Treaty Council News

Our Mission

The International Indian Treaty Council (IITC) is an organization of Indigenous Peoples from North, Central, South America, the Caribbean and the Pacific working for the Sovereignty and Self Determination of Indigenous Peoples and the recognition and protection of Indigenous Rights, Treaties, Traditional Cultures and Sacred Lands.

A Voice for Indigenous Peoples

The IITC was founded in June 1974 at a gathering on the Standing Rock Reservation in South Dakota attended by more than 5000 representatives from 98 Indigenous Nations. The symbol of the sacred pipe uniting the hemisphere was chosen by the elders to represent the common bonds of spirituality, relationship to the land and traditional culture shared by all Indigenous Peoples.

The IITC supports Indigenous Peoples’ struggles for human and Treaty rights, self-determination, food sovereignty, environmental health and justice through information dissemination, coalition building, advocacy, training and technical assistance. The IITC builds the direct, effective participation of Indigenous Peoples in regional, national and international events, gatherings and policy discussions addressing their rights, ways of life and survival.

In 1977 IITC became the first Indigenous Peoples’ organization to be recognized as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) with Consultative Status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council. In 2011, IITC was the first to be upgraded to General Consultation Status in recognition of its active participation in a wide range of international bodies and processes to ensure that the rights of Indigenous Peoples are recognized, respected and upheld.

The IITC carries out trainings for Indigenous Peoples, Tribal Nations and Communities to build their capacity to use international human rights processes to defend their rights, respond to urgent threats and hold countries and corporations accountable for violations. IITC also maintains an electronic communications network, including a web page, e-news and social media, to share updates and opportunities for involvement, and build awareness and support for Indigenous Peoples’ struggles.

IITC does not receive any state or federal funding. Instead, we rely on the generous support of foundation grants, Indigenous Nations and Tribes, and contributions from private donors, friends and allies to sustain our work. Please consider contributing to support the work of IITC. Whether it be monthly giving or a one time donation, any amount helps and all are tax deductible.