Michelle W Bowman: Engagement, research and policy - integrating indigenous voices into economic inclusion at the Federal Reserve

Speech by Ms Michelle W Bowman, Member of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, at the Virtual Symposium on Indigenous Economies: Bank of Canada, Tulo Centre of Indigenous Economics, the Reserve Bank of New Zealand, 29 November 2021.

The views expressed in this speech are those of the speaker and not the view of the BIS.

Central bank speech  | 
02 December 2021

Thank you to the Bank of Canada for the invitation to speak at today's symposium. It is an honor to be with you virtually today as the Federal Reserve Board's representative to the Central Bank Network for Indigenous Inclusion. I am pleased to add my voice to those of my colleagues today and to recognize and acknowledge that the United States and the foundation of its economy were built on land enriched by its original Indigenous inhabitants, and their stewardship of its natural resources.

The economic well-being of Indigenous people is an important aspect of the Federal Reserve's goal to increase economic inclusion for all Americans, and it is one of the reasons we are participating in today's symposium and the Central Bank Network for Indigenous Inclusion. Over time, it has become evident that opportunities to succeed and build a better life for all economic participants is a central concept for a healthy and growing economy and a stable and strong financial system. The negative effects of past policies and a lack of economic opportunity have impacted Indigenous people for generations. I would like to acknowledge this history, but also to acknowledge that no great nation can prosper when its people are left behind. The Federal Reserve, with all of the powerful tools at its disposal, can't fully succeed unless Native people, and others that have existed on the margins of the economy, have the opportunity to become full participants. The discussions today, including those regarding access to credit for Indigenous communities, can advance this goal.