The Edmonton Eskimos will change their name.
The CFL squad makes the move following a similar decision by the NFL’s Washington team as pressure mounts on teams to eliminate racist or stereotypical names.
The team said in a release it will begin “a comprehensive engagement process” on a new name. In the meantime, the club will use the names EE Football Team and Edmonton Football Team.
The decision comes less than a week after two published reports said the team was on the verge of changing its name.
Critics say the Edmonton team’s name is a derogatory, colonial-era term for Inuit.
In February, the Edmonton club announced it was keeping the name following year-long research that involved Inuit leaders and community members across Canada. The club said it received “no consensus” during that review.
On July 8, the Edmonton club promised to speed up another review of its name and provide an update by the end of the month. In that statement, the club noted “a lot has happened” since it made the decision in February.
One of the team’s sponsors, national car-and-home insurance provider Belairdirect, had announced a day earlier that it was rethinking its relationship with the team because of the name.
The Canadian Press
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