Adidas plans to help high schools around the US shelve their racist Native American mascots, AP reports. The athletic company will offer design resources and financial support in an effort to help simplify the process of creating new team logos for schools who have long held onto more unfortunate ones.
Around 2,000 schools nationwide use Native American mascots
Adidas executives made the announcement at the White House Tribal Nations Conference today, according to AP. The voluntary program will collaborate with participating schools on logo redesign, team names, and uniform designs. The company also said it would be a founding member of a new coalition called Change the Mascot meant to address Native American imagery in sports.
"Our intention is to help break down any barriers to change — change that can lead to a more respectful and inclusive environment for all American athletes," Eric Liedtke, Adidas' head of global brands, said in a statement to AP.
Despite recent backlash against Native American mascots — the Washington Redskins had their trademarks canceled last year and the term "Redskins" was recently banned from California sports — there around around 2,000 American high schools who still use some kind of racist imagery or symbolism in their athletic teams, AP reports.