Washington, D.C.’s football team us undergoing a “thorough review” of its “Redskins” name, the team said Friday.
The name, which Native American activists have said for years constitutes a slur, has come under increased fire lately in light of protests for racial justice around the country.
“In light of recent events around our country and feedback from our community, the Washington Redskins are announcing the team will undergo a thorough review of the team’s name,” read a team statement released Friday. “This review formalizes the initial discussions the team has been having with the league in recent weeks.”
That “community” no doubt includes thousands of fans — but it also includes FedEx, which on Thursday confirmed to AdWeek that it wanted the name changed. FedEx’s CEO Fred Smith is part owner of the team, which currently plays at FedExField in Landover, Maryland.
Federal and local officials in Washington, including the district’s non-voting congresswoman Rep. Elanor Holmes Norton (D), have said that the team won’t be able to pursue a desired move to the current site of RFK Stadium, which is owned by the federal government, without a new name.
“There is no viable path, locally or federally, for the Washington football team to return to Washington, D.C., without first changing the team name,” D.C.’s deputy mayor, John Falcicchio, told the Washington Post on Wednesday.