Cleveland Indians to continue using team name while ‘non-Native American based name’ is identified

Cleveland Indians to continue using team name while ‘non-Native American based name’ is identified
Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Shane Bieber delivers in the first inning of a baseball game against the Chicago White Sox, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak) (Source: Tony Dejak)

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The Cleveland Indians acknowledged on Monday afternoon intent to begin the name-changing process, but added the franchise will keep the “Indians” title until a new, “non-Native American” one is decided upon.

The decision to move forward with changing the name commenced in July 2020 after an extensive process to learn how the “Indians” title affected different communities and if it aligned with the organization’s values.

In part, a statement from the franchise reads:

“We are deeply grateful for the interest and engagement from Native American communities, civic leaders, leading researchers, fans, corporate partners, players, and internal teammates devoted to these formal and informal conversations. After reflecting upon those discussions, we believe our organization is at its best when we can unify our community and bring people together – and we believe a new name will allow us to do this more fully.”

The Cleveland baseball team will continue using the name “Indians” while a new franchise name is identified.

“Hearing firsthand the stories and experiences of Native American people, we gained a deep understanding of how tribal communities feel about the team name and the detrimental effects it has on them,” team owner Paul Dolan said. “We also spoke to local civic leaders who represent diverse populations in our city and who highlighted the negative impact our team name has had on our broader population and on under-represented groups across our community. I am truly grateful for their engagement and input, which I found enlightening and insightful. When a sports team is aligned with its community, it unlocks the ability to unite people from different backgrounds and bring people together in support of their home team.”

Currently, the process to change names in in phase one of the multi-step process, the team announced.

Statement from the organization.

Posted by Cleveland Indians on Monday, December 14, 2020

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