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NIEA Applauds Oregon State Board of Education for Ban on Native Mascots

For Immediate Release
News Alert
May 18, 2012
www.NIEA.org

Contact NIEA Communications
E: rbiddle@niea.org
T: 202.544.7290
Social: @Nieadotorg/NieaFanPage

 

NIEA applauds OREGON STATE BOARD OF EDUCATION FOR BAN

ON NATIVE MASCOTS

nATION’S LEADING ADVOCATE FOR NATIVE CHILDREN helped fight FOR STATE DECISION THAT HELPS FOSTER POSITIVE school climates

Washington, DC – National Indian Education Association applauds the Oregon State Board of Education for its decision yesterday to ban the use of offensive Native American mascots by schools in the state. Thanks to this decision, there is now opportunity to create more-welcoming cultures for American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian students in at least 15 of Oregon’s elementary and secondary schools.

This ban came about thanks to the work of Native advocates in Oregon, who strongly petitioned state board members to enact the ban. NIEA and its more than 3,000 members and advocates supported their efforts by issuing a letter in March in support of the action and alerting members and followers on Twitter and Facebook.

For NIEA, this advocacy for banning the use of Native mascots in schools is about promoting healthy school climates that respect all cultures. The continued use of American Indian mascots, names, symbols, images, and personalities undermines the educational experiences of American Indian students – and all students – because it reinforces the idea that it is acceptable to perpetuate culturally offensive behavior and misconceptions. Every student has the right to learn in a safe environment free from harmful stereotypes.

“This is a proud day for all Native activists and their communities, not only in Oregon, but across the nation,” says NIEA President Quinton Roman Nose. “Putting an end to stereotypes that belittle our cultures, be it wrongful interpretations of our role in American history, or in the form of team mascots, will help improve school climates for every Native student.”

At NIEA’s 2009 annual convention in Milwaukee, NIEA members passed a resolution to eliminate all race-based

Indian mascots. In May of 2011, the United State Senate Committee on Indian Affairs held an oversight hearing to address the impact of negative Indigenous stereotypes.

Reporters can learn more about NIEA’s policy positions and resolutions at NIEA.org. Reporters can also contact NIEA Communications at rbiddle@niea.org or at (202) 544-7290 for more information.

jUST THE FACTS

WHO: NIEA President Quinton Roman Nose and the association’s 3,000 members and advocates  

WHAT: Oregon’s ban on the use of offensive and hurtful Native mascots by schools.

WHY: Cultures of respect cannot be fostered in schools when harmful stereotypes are promoted.

MEDIA CONTACT: NIEA Communications (rbiddle@niea.org or 202.544.7290)

 

About National Indian Education Association: The premiere organization advocating for educational excellence, opportunity, and equity for American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian students, the mission of the National Indian Education Association (NIEA) is to support traditional Native cultures and values; to enable Native learners to become contributing members of their communities; to promote Native control of educational institutions; and to improve educational opportunities and resources for American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians throughout the United States. Learn more at www.NIEA.org.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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