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  • The President attends a Sbalay ceremony of reconciliation between the Tayal indigenous communities in the Skaru watershed and national forest management agencies

    The Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) organized a Sbalay ceremony of reconciliation between the Tayal indigenous communities in the Skaru watershed and national forest management agencies at the Tayal Ancestral Square today (April 23). President Tsai attended and gave a speech at the ceremony, which was also attended by CIP Minister Icyang Parod, legislator Saidhai Tahovecahe, the deputy magistrates of Hsinchu and Miaoli Counties, Veterans Affairs Council Deputy Minister Lee Wen-chung, Ministry of the Interior Construction and Planning Agency Director-General Wu Hsin-hsou, Ministry of Culture Chief Secretary Chen Teng-chin, Forestry Bureau Director-General Lin Hwa-ching, and the leaders of the Indigenous communities in the Skaru watershed. Many members of the Indigenous communities in the Skaru watershed also participated in the event to witness this Sbalay ceremony that was made possible through great efforts. CIP Minister Icyang said that after four years of struggle and countless negotiations, a Tayal ancestral spirit monument was finally erected here today at the same spot as a veterans memorial, demonstrating the different viewpoints of the government and the Indigenous peoples and the mutual respect of diverse historical perspectives. The following is a full transcript of the speech given by CIP Minister Icyang Parod: When President Tsai apologized to Indigenous peoples on behalf of the government on August 1, 2016, she specifically mentioned Sbalay—the traditional reconciliation culture of the Tayal people—and spoke of how the achieving of reconciliation starts with seeking out the truth, and that sincere apology and acceptance are required during this process. Today, the CIP is extremely honored to oversee this reconciliation between the Tayal indigenous communities in the Skaru watershed and national forest management agencies that is held in a traditional Tayal ceremony. The Office of Forestry Administration of the Taiwan Provincial Government’s Department of Agriculture and Forestry began works on the Dalu Forest Trail in January 1963 and later erected a veterans memorial for deceased veterans on the trail in March 1965. The dec

  • CIP Minister Icyang Parod Attends the Constitutional Court in Person for Oral Argument

    March 9, 2021—The Judicial Yuan’s Grand Justices convened today for the oral argument of the constitutional interpretation request involving Indigenous hunters Mr. Talum Suqluman (Chinese name: Wang Kuang-lu) and Mr. Pan Chih-chiang. Mr. Icyang Parod, Minister of the Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP), appeared in court to deliver the CIP’s statement of opinion. “This is the first case involving Indigenous peoples’ rights at the Constitutional Court, and I am here in person to defend our rights as should be protected under the Constitution,” said Mr. Icyang. At the start of the oral argument, Mr. Icyang delivered the official CIP statement, which is included below in full: Arayhan no mako to pasa’opo^ no huing to sakalalicay to sasowalen, tadaka’irayan a matahidangko Yin-min-hwey a mipaini to nafaloco’an. First of all, it is the CIP’s belief that the Constitution contains clear stipulations that the cultural rights of the Indigenous peoples shall be protected, which of course, entails Indigenous hunting culture. By nature, Indigenous peoples’ rights to hunt are not limited to “an Indigenous community” but should extend to the individual level as well. During the 1995 and 1997 constitutional amendment movements, I myself, along with many other like-minded proponents, advocated the inclusion of Indigenous peoples’ rights in the Constitution as fundamental rights. In response, the National Assembly included clear stipulations on the protection of such rights under Article 10, Paragraphs 11–12 of the Additional Articles of the Constitution. In particular, protection of indigenous peoples’ cultural rights, as defined by the Constitution, saw implementation with the ratification of the Education Act for Indigenous Peoples and Indigenous Peoples Basic Law by the Legislative Yuan in 1998 and 2005 respectively. The CIP understands “Indigenous hunting culture” as an important element with great cultural significance inseparable from the education-culture-knowledge system that comprises Indigenous languages, rites, festivals, religions, and hunting organizatio

  • Vice President Lai Ching-te Visits Taitung to Check on Local Indigenous Industry Development

    March 20, 2021—To help Indigenous industries take root in the local economy and attract the younger generation to return to their home towns to pursue sustainable careers or start new businesses, the Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) launched the Lean Entrepreneurship Program, Innovative R&D Subsidy Program, and New Business Loan Program to provide Indigenous Peoples with material support. Today, Vice President Lai Ching-te paid a visit to the Taitung Indigenous Cultural and Creative Industries Park in person to share his own entrepreneurial experiences with youths that have returned to Taitung. Mr. Lai also made stops at several Indigenous businesses, including Bai-Chung-Ren Foodstuff Co., Ltd. and TTstyle Arts and Crafts. During his tenure as Prime Minister, Mr. Lai promoted the National Strategic Plan for Spurring Local Economies to encourage youths living in big cities to return to their rural home towns. The plan had a particular focus on traditional Indigenous cultures and industries, and since President Tsai Ing-wen took office in 2016, the CIP has invested NT$ 430 million in Taitung through related economic and industrial development plans to support 28 Indigenous entrepreneurs in starting their own companies and 9 Indigenous businesses in upgrading their technologies and services. The CIP also established the Taitung Indigenous Cultural and Creative Industries Park (TTICC) and TTstyle Indigenous Arts and Crafts Center to gradually realize the government’s policy of promoting local economies. CIP Minister Icyang Parod said that in order to help Indigenous industries take root under the National Strategic Plan for Spurring Local Economies, the CIP has been actively implementing related policies. According to Mr. Icyang, the five businesses (including Bai-Chung-Ren Foodstuff Co., Ltd.) attending the entrepreneurial experience sharing workshop today were all examples of Indigenous youths returning home to spur the local economies under the encouragement of the CIP, and additionally, the CIP-funded and Taitung Government-operated TTICC can serve as the best venue to make and sell creative works. Mr. Icyang added that the CIP will continue

  • CIP Minister Icyang Parod Attends ‘COVID-19 Travel Bubble’ Launch Ceremony, Shares His Palau Experience

    March 30, 2021—Taiwan and Palau officially kicked off their bilateral COVID-19 travel bubble program today, the first of its kind in the Asia-Pacific region. The first group of tourists is scheduled to depart on April 1. This morning, Taiwan’s Embassy in the Republic of Palau and the Palau Visitors Authority co-hosted the “Taiwan-Palau travel bubble launch ceremony” at the 1F Plaza of the Shin Kong Life Tower. Among the many guests in attendance was Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) Minister Icyang Parod, who has visited Palau on four occasions. Mr. Icyang shared his personal travel experiences during his visits to the beautiful and pure island country with a spectacular ocean view. His full speech is included below: To President Whipps, and to all guests in attendance today, good afternoon! Alii (Palauan greeting)! First and foremost, I must say I am truly honored to be invited to promote the Taiwan-Palau travel bubble. I and Palau have a long history. My first visit to Palau was in 2007, and I visited there three more times in the following years. In fact, I am probably one of the very few Indigenous people in Taiwan who have traveled there so many times. Therefore, trust me when I say that the Palauan people are the most hospitable bunch. Palau has a lot to offer both on land and in the ocean, so I thought I would share some of my own experiences to show you why you must visit Palau for yourselves. First, the people of Palau belong to the Austronesian Family, just like the Indigenous peoples of Taiwan, and we share very similar languages and cultures. While conducting tourism promotion, the Palau Visitors Authority is also simultaneously preserving and increasing awareness of traditional local cultures and embodying the spirit of environmental sustainability—this is the same spirit and values that Taiwan’s CIP operates by in promoting its Indigenous tourism industry. In March 2019, I accompanied President Tsai on her official visit to Palau, during which a trip to the Airai Bai , or “Men’s Meetinghouse of Arai,” left a deep impression on me. There, I sat with traditional community leaders to learn ab

  • Book launch for the Major Events in Indigenous History book series—the CIP, Ministry of Education, and the Ministry of Culture create an Indigenous historical narrative

    To create an Indigenous historical narrative and promote Indigenous historical justice and transitional justice, the Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) held the book launch for the Major Events in Indigenous History book series today (January 25, 2021). The event was attended by CIP Minister Icyang Parod, Minister of Education Pan Wen-chung, and Ministry of Culture Secretary-General Chen Teng-chin, along with the authors of the book series. Between 2005 and 2019, the CIP has published ten books under the series—Mudan Incident , O lalood i Cepo' (Takangko Incident) , Karewan Incident, Nanzhuang Incident, Zyaw pinttriqan nqu llingay Mbngciq (Dabaoshe Incident), Zyaw pinttriqan nqu llingay Msbtunux (Takoham Incident), Zyaw pinttriqan nqu llingay Tapung (Lidongshan Incident), Cikasuan Incident, Truku Incident, and Bunun mas minbas Lipun (Dafen Incident). Due to the great response received after the book launch for the ten books held on February 19, 2020, the CIP decided to release a new edition of the Major Events in Indigenous History book series following review of the contents of the books by each author. The following is a full transcript of the speech given by CIP Minister Icyang Parod: Greetings to Minister Pan, Secretary-General Chen, our dear authors, and honored guests! In President Tsai Ing-wen’s official apology to Taiwan’s Indigenous population issued on August 1, 2016, she specifically said: “There is a book called ‘The General History of Taiwan’ published in 1920. In its foreword are these words: ‘Taiwan had no history. The Dutch pioneered it, the Koxinga Kingdom built it, and the Qing Empire managed it.’ This is a typical Han view of history. The truth is that Indigenous peoples have been here for thousands of years, with rich culture and wisdom that have been passed down through generations. But we only know to write history from the perspective of the dominant. For this, I apologize to the Indigenous peoples on behalf of the government.” The creation of an Indigenous historical narrative is therefore a major part of our mission to promote Indigenous historical justice and transitional justic

  • Legislative Yuan passes the third reading of the amendment to the Status Act for Indigenous Peoples to offer remedial options to the orphaned children of Indigenous peoples who passed away before applying for status recovery

    The Legislative Yuan passed the draft amendment to the Status Act for Indigenous Peoples today (December 31, 2020), which focuses on offering remedial options to the orphaned children of Indigenous peoples who passed away before recovering their Indigenous status. The Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) pointed out that prior to the implementation of the Status Act for Indigenous Peoples, Indigenous peoples may have been forced to forfeit their Indigenous status due to adoption or intermarriages between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. Although status recovery was able to be applied for after the implementation of the Status Act for Indigenous Peoples, the orphaned children of Indigenous peoples who passed away before applying for status recovery were unable to recover their Indigenous status. This amendment passed by the Legislative Yuan allows people in such circumstances to be able to apply for the recovery of their Indigenous status. The CIP also pointed out that in the past, if an individual who was a child of intermarriage between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples did not take the surname of their Indigenous father or mother nor take a traditional Indigenous name, and passed away before recovering their Indigenous status, their children were also unable to recover their Indigenous status. However, after this amendment, a remedial option is offered to children of such individuals: apply to take a traditional Indigenous name within two years of the promulgation of the amendment and obtain Indigenous status. The CIP further pointed out that in the past, if an Indigenous individual wished to apply to acquire, forfeit, or change their Indigenous status, they would have to make their submission to the local household registration office of their registered domicile. This amendment relaxes this restriction, allowing Indigenous peoples to, in the future, submit their registration to any household registration office. Lastly, the CIP notes that the amendment has a two-year application deadline for some of the eligible cases and encourages peoples with Indigenous heritage who identify with their Indigenous culture to seize the opportunity to submit the

  • CIP Minister Icyang Parod Visits Nakahila Community Meeting Hall in Zhouxi Township, Hualien County, Promises Additional Funding of NT$ 159.58 Million to Improve the Meeting Hall and Its Connecting Roads

    On the morning of April 25, Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) Minister Icyang Parod visited the Nakahila Community Meeting Hall, which is currently under construction in Zhouxi Township, Hualien County, for a briefing alongside the township mayor, village chief, and community leader and members. Mr. Icyang stated after listening to the briefing that the meeting hall serves as a center of political and everyday life for local indigenous communities, and that it is where regular community meetings and traditional harvest festivals take place. In order to preserve indigenous culture and ensure traffic safety, the CIP sets aside an annual budget to help local governments build indigenous meeting halls and carry out road improvements to give local indigenous peoples a cultural space and safe roads to use when going to work, school, or the hospital. According to Mr. Icyang, meeting halls are of great significance to indigenous communities, while a safe road network facilitates disaster relief, improves healthcare accessibility, and benefits local commuters. The CIP has provided additional funding of NT$ 159.58 million to build two meeting halls, design two more, and improve road conditions in 15 locations. Zhouxi Township, Hualien County is the location of two of the 19 projects—the new Nakahila Community Meeting Hall and repairs on the Lunbushan Communication Road, which is the main road connecting the Dauqpusan and Swasal communities. Traffic here is often interrupted by road closures due to potholes caused by torrential rains. A feasibility study was commissioned in July 2018, and the project is currently in the planning and design stage. Once the design is finalized, the CIP will provide the necessary funding for road repairs to protect local indigenous peoples’ fundamental rights. At the end of the briefing, Mr. Icyang reiterated the CIP’s commitment to working with local governments to build new meeting halls and improve public road infrastructure to create a high-quality, sustainable living environment for the indigenous peoples. CIP Contact: Ku Chi-min Telephone: (02) 8995-3278 or 0932-236643

  • CIP Publishes Policy Performance Review with Titles in Chinese and Indigenous Languages for the First Time

    Article 1 of the Indigenous Languages Development Act states that “indigenous languages are national languages,” and Article 2 Paragraph 2 of the same act defines “indigenous scripts” as “writing systems used to record indigenous languages.” As a demonstration of the government’s commitment to enforcing the act, the Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) published the O Pitiri'an to Heci^ no Nitayalan no Yin-cu-min-cu: 2016–2020 (“A Review of Policy Outcomes by the Council of Indigenous Peoples: 2016–2020”), the first policy performance report with both a Chinese title and one written in the Amis language. The report was assigned an International Standard Book Number (ISBN) and passed the Cataloging in Publication (CIP) application review. The National Central Library has included the report as part of its permanent collection, marking a new page in the history of the indigenous peoples of Taiwan. The report details 20 major CIP policy initiatives between May 20, 2016 and May 20, 2020, as well as their outcomes.    In Mr. Icyang Parod’s four years as the CIP Minister, his team has not only continued to carry out routine tasks serving the indigenous peoples, but has also completed many challenging projects that had been delayed or put aside for a number of years. Major policy outcomes in the report can be classified into the following 6 categories: 1. Indigenous languages revitalization: The Indigenous Languages Development Act Promulgated on June 14, 2017 defines indigenous languages as national languages. The CIP has established a number of indigenous language promotion organizations that train professional language teachers and offer mentorship programs in order to preserve critically endangered languages. 2. Establishment of indigenous culture and healthcare stations: The number of culture and healthcare stations increased from 121 in 2016 to 413 in 2020, while caregivers’ pay has been raised from NT$ 15,000 to NT$ 33,000. Improvements have also been made to the facilities and their surroundings to give indigenous elders a safer and more comfortable gathering space. 3. Co

  • CIP Organizes Indigenous Arts Workshops to Promote ‘Epidemic Prevention Lifestyle’

    July 6, 2020—To promote indigenous handicrafts and other industries, the Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) established the Aboriginal Peoples Culture Center (APC Center) as a venue for training talent in traditional indigenous skills. Courses at the center were interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020, but thanks to the disease control measures implemented by the government and the cooperation of the general public, the number of new COVID-19 cases has been brought to a minimum. Therefore in May, the center began accepting new course registrations once again. The first course to resume was the bamboo weaving certification program, which held its first session today. In Taiwan’s indigenous cultures, everyday objects made of linen, bamboo strips, rattan, and shell ginger leaves such as bamboo back baskets, rattan storage bins, and shell ginger handbags are very common. As one of the most important venues for preserving and passing down indigenous heritage, the Aboriginal Peoples Culture Center (APC Center) set up the bamboo weaving certification program and hired a professional instructor to help trainees improve their weaving skills. Furthermore, trainees are encouraged to engage in discussion, think outside the box, and create innovative products with their newly acquired weaving skills. Those who successfully complete the program can apply for certification as a bamboo weaving specialist under the Ministry of Labor’s Professional Skills Certification Program. The CIP collects feedback from trainees to help the center develop a wider range of courses that keep pace with trends in indigenous industries, and as a result, three new categories of courses in the cultural and creative industries, leisure and recreation, and agriculture were added to the curriculum. In addition to training students in technical skills through lessons taught by skilled instructors, the APC Center invites indigenous people with prosperous businesses to share their success stories with the trainees to help them master entrepreneurship and innovation. These programs are offered to indigenous peoples free of charge. Except for travel expenses to and from the

  • CIP to Invest another NT$ 132.86 Million in Road, Bridge, and Infrastructure Improvements in Indigenous Communities

    In order to improve roads and other infrastructure in indigenous communities, the Council of Indigenous Peoples (CIP) approved 31 applications by local governments under the 2020 Indigenous Community Sustainability and Landscaping Project and the Indigenous Community Feature Road Improvement Plan with a combined budget of NT$ 132.86 million. According to CIP Minister Icyang Parod, the locations that received subsidies are centers of political and everyday life in local indigenous communities. The CIP sets aside an annual budget to help local governments make infrastructure improvements and to spur economic and industrial development for indigenous peoples and thus protect their right to public safety, transportation, and health care, as well as to provide them with a safer and more convenient living environment. The CIP pointed to the Anasolay community, one of the indigenous communities that received a subsidy this year, as an example. Located in Meihe Village, Taimali Township, Taitung County, the Anasolay community sits on a steep hillside. The mountain behind the residential buildings has posed an increasing risk of flooding and mudslides in recent years due to frequent torrential rains, and so the CIP funded the construction of retaining walls with drainage facilities to secure the slope, drain rainwater, and protect local residents. Another example furnished by the CIP is that of Xiweng Road in Hsinchu County. This is the main road that connects the Si’ung community with the outside world, and it also cuts through the neighboring Mintuyu and Sansaru indigenous communities. Long stretches of persimmon plantations can be seen along the road, and popular scenic spots such as the Xiweng Waterfall and Campsite are just nearby. However, insufficient drainage facilities have caused severe damage to the road, posing a danger to travelers and local residents. Therefore, the CIP approved a NT$ 23.29 million budget for road improvements, installing ditches, retaining walls, guardrails, and reflective markings to increase road safety, which in turn strengthened the local tourism and produce industries. Most importantly, the people of Si’ung community wil