Edmonton CFL team to heed calls of sponsors, further review potential name change

Edmonton CFL team to heed calls of sponsors, further review potential name change

The Edmonton Eskimos said Wednesday they would be “accelerating our ongoing process of review” in reference to the club’s nickname following recent calls by sponsors to do and provide an update by the end of July.

Longtime sponsor Belairdirect, a car and home insurance company and one of the team’s 13 premier partners, called for a team name change on Tuesday, stating its use since the late 19th century is no longer appropriate.

“We acknowledge and appreciate the feedback and input regarding our name,” Rose Mary Phillip, the Edmonton team’s vice-president of marketing & communications, said in a email to CBC Sports. “We take this issue seriously as has been demonstrated by the three years we’ve spent engaging in Canada’s north and conducting research related to our name.

” We recognize that a lot has occurred since this information was gathered, and as a result, we are accelerating our ongoing process of review.  We will be seeking further input from the Inuit, our partners and other stakeholders to inform our decisions moving forward.

“We’ll continue to listen carefully and with an open mind,” she continued.

Belairdirect, in a statement to CBC News on Tuesday, said in order for the company to move forward and continue its partnership with the football organization “we will need to see concrete action in the near future including a commitment to a name change.”

Edmonton’s team has seen repeated calls for a name change in the past and faces renewed criticism as sports teams in Canada, the United States and elsewhere are urged to remove outdated and sometimes racist names and images.

The threat from Belairdirect comes days after the Washington NFL team’s stadium sponsor FedEx, along with other sponsors, asked the team to change its name.

The team responded by launching a review of its name. Major League Baseball’s Cleveland Indians, who retired their racist caricature “Chief Wahoo” logo in 2018 but kept their name, and the National Football League’s Washington Redskins, whose name contains a racial slur, both said on Friday they would undertake a review.

WATCH | Washington NFL team reviewing team name:

The NFL’s Washington Redskins say they will undergo a “thorough review” of the team’s Indigenous-slur name, after pressure from sponsors and an international focus on racism. 2:06

Published at Wed, 08 Jul 2020 16:14:41 +0000