‘Redmen’ team name and logo will change
Michael Franklin, CTV Calgary
Published Friday, March 7, 2014 5:19AM MST
Last Updated Friday, March 7, 2014 8:27AM MST
As soon as the issue of a sports team name at a Calgary high school, that many consider to be racist, went public, it wasn’t long before something was done.
The Calgary Board of Education and Western Canada High School have decided to retire the name ‘Redmen’ as the moniker for its team name, shortly after a school in Saskatoon made the same decision.
The CBE made the decision on Thursday.
“It’s fair to say the appropriateness of the Redmen name is being looked at and a transition will occur to a new name,” says Calvin Davies with the Calgary Board of Education. “The name will be changed.”
The board says the issue has been in discussion for more than a decade and this year, it will finally be changed.
Davies say there will obviously be some cost involved to replace logos and uniforms.
"From athletic uniforms to resurfacing the floor of the gym. Those are going to be some substantive costs. We as an organization will be looking to see where we can find the costs to help support the school so they don't have those additional costs to bear," said Davies.
The decision is met with mixed reaction from students at the school.
“I think it’s a questionable thing to call anyone. ‘Redmen’ is a racial slur,” says Marina Buston, a student at Western Canada High School. “It would be the same as yellow or black. It’s just inappropriate to call a different culture.”
Others say the name is treated with respect by students. “I don’t think it’s an issue that way, but obviously we don’t want to be stepping on anyone’s feet or anything like that.”
Members of the Morley First Nations say the name doesn’t bother them.
“It’s been there so long so, for me, it’s no big deal,” one man said.
The CBE says they will be consulting with parents and students at Western Canada High during the process to find a new name and logo, as well as an Elders Advisory Council and First Nations people.
Students say they support the name change, even though they will always have ‘Redmen’ pride.
“I’m not going to fight against that. That’s not my place,” one student says.
There is no timeline on when the name will change, but it’s likely the name will stay through the remainder of this year and possibly into September.