CASS LAKE, MN- Today, the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe celebrates, along with the rest of Indian Country, the announcement of a permanent retirement of the Washington D.C. Football Team’s racist nickname. We urge other sports teams and organizations who continue to perpetuate racism through their use of stereotypical nicknames, imagery and/or chants such as the “tomahawk chop”, to immediately follow suit and remove these harmful and damaging depictions of Indigenous people.
“We are very glad to see the Washington football team acknowledge that their former nickname has no place in today’s society”, said Leech Lake Tribal Chairman, Faron Jackson. “We want to extend a huge thank you and recognize the shareholders and investment firms who contacted Nike, FedEx and PepsiCo urging them to support this effort. We also want to recognize these companies for following through on their corporate commitments to diversity and inclusion, by pressuring the franchise owner to reach this decision. Indigenous people and Native organizations have been tirelessly campaigning to have these symbols removed for quite some time, we appreciate the assistance of all our allies in helping to move this particular case across the finish line.”