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Thursday 19 October 2017

Tribe seeks Redskins name change

The Oneida Indian Nation says the Washington Redskins' name is offensive
The Oneida Indian Nation says the Washington Redskins' name is offensive

A tribe in New York State is planning to launch a radio advertising campaign calling for the Washington Redskins American football team to get rid of a name that is often criticised as offensive.

The Oneida Indian Nation said the first ad will run on radio stations in Washington before the gridiron team hosts the Philadelphia Eagles in its NFL season opener on Monday night.

In the ad, Oneida Nation leader Ray Halbritter says NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell should "stand up to bigotry" by denouncing "the racial slur" in the team's name.

"We do not deserve to be called redskins," the Oneida leader says in the ad. "We deserve to be treated as what we are - Americans."

The radio ad acknowledged Mr Goodell had rightly been critical this summer after an Eagles wide receiver was caught on video making a racial slur against African-Americans.

The ads launch as the Washington Redskins face a fresh barrage of criticism over their name, with local leaders and pundits calling for a name change. In May, 10 members of Congress sent letters to Redskins owner Dan Snyder and Mr Goodell, urging the team to change the name.

Mr Snyder has vowed to never change the name.

League spokesman Brian McCarthy, in an email to The Associated Press, said they "respect that reasonable people may have differing views".

"The name from its origin has always intended to be positive and has always been used by the team in a highly respectful manner," Mr McCarthy wrote.

There was no immediate response from the Redskins.

Press Association

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