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Board Votes to Form a Committee to Examine Redskins Mascot Issue


Posted Date: 07/16/2020

Board Votes to Form a Committee to Examine Redskins Mascot Issue

The Union Board of Education Monday night unanimously voted to form a committee to consider changing the Redskins mascot.

The committee will be introduced at next month's board meeting on Aug. 10. The committee would be comprised of about 35 members with various outlooks, including Native Americans. Superintendent Dr. Kirt Hartzler hopes to have an answer on the mascot issue by the end of this year. Read transcript of speakers from the meeting.

In the video, which was streamed online, you can view many of the comments presented to the Board.

(You may wish to fast forward the video 15 minutes when the meeting and sound begin.)


Media Coverage

Union Public Schools committee to make recommendation on 'Redskins' mascot; area tribal representatives to be included

Seventeen years after previous board members voted unanimously to keep Union Public Schools’ mascot, today’s board members decided unanimously Monday to begin a process that seems likely to lead to the end of the Redskins name and logo.

The board will appoint a committee that will spend the rest of 2020 studying the issue, with members including advisers from the Creek and Cherokee nations. Specific people haven’t been named, but other committee members will include students, faculty and alumni, with the goal of recommending by December whether to keep the mascot. Continue reading Tulsa World story.

Group pushes to retire Union's mascot; district to discuss at school board meeting

The Washington Redskins has announced it will retire its mascot, and right here in Tulsa, the Union School District could be close behind. They are now discussing retiring their mascot, also known as the Redskins. It’s been 17 years since the Union School Board addressed its mascot.

Now, that’s all changing, but it’s many years overdue if you ask Jordan Harmon. “The ‘R-word’ is considered a racial slur,” Harmon said. See KTUL story/video.

Union takes first step toward dropping the name 'Redskins'

This has been an ongoing demand from the Native American community going back more than half a century.

Seventeen years ago, the board voted to keep the name, citing support for the Redskins name from the student body, staff, and parents. Now, they say the tables have turned. More than an hour before the discussion began inside, protesters gathered in front of the school to get the ball rolling.

"Is it worth all this? That's my question," said Cindy Martin with the Tulsa Indian Coalition Against Racism.

One of the many questions that Martin and the Tulsa Indian Coalition Against Racism have for the Union School leadership. They say integrity and things like that. There's nothing integral about the word Redskins, about the use of the fake tipi, or the racist Indian head logo that they use. See KTUL story/video.

Union Public Schools Announces Committee To Evaluate Mascot

Union Public Schools decided Monday night to form a committee to re-evaluate its Redskins logo and mascot.

The school board hopes to see its new committee made of 35 members that include students, teachers, parents, community members and more.   

Superintendent Dr. Kirk Hartzler said the school district has been considering the name change for years and wanted to revisit that now. This new committee will oversee re-evaluating the Redskins logo and mascot. 

Students and community members hosted a demonstration before the meeting to share support for the name change. Some also shared how the name they see as derogatory has affected them personally. See KOTV story/video

Union Public Schools votes to establish committee to review 'Redskins' mascot

Union Public Schools votes to establish committee to review 'Redskins' mascot. See KJRH video.

 

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