The Edmonton CFL team has dropped the word Eskimo from its name.
The club made the announcement on Tuesday, issuing a press release stating “Recent findings demonstrate that views regarding the team name are shifting.”
The word Eskimo has been criticized as racist for years, but the club previously defended it — stating the name was appreciative, not insulting. As a result of the criticism the team launched a research process three years ago to discuss the meaning of the name with the communities it affected.
In the release, the team said the adoption of the name 100 years ago “celebrated the hardiness and spirit of those who live in the north.”
However, in early July, sponsors such as Belairdirect threatened to sever ties with the team if the name wasn’t changed.
Criticism continued to mount last week when the club held an online survey to gauge public opinion that was heavily mocked on social media as being biased.
Here’s the survey from the Edmonton Football team on changing their name.
Feel free to fill it out. https://t.co/nGusKNj1zG
— Brent Oliver (@brentoliver) July 14, 2020
The club says it will now begin an engagement process on a new name with season seat holders, casual ticket purchasers and partners.
In the meantime it will be referred to as the EE Football Team or the Edmonton Football Team.