Chiefs Ban Native American Imagery at Arrowhead

Brock Fritz Headshot

The Kansas City Chiefs are enacting measures to remove Native American imagery from their games.

The reigning Super Bowl champions released a statement Thursday, announcing they have adopted several new policies at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo.

“In 2014, we began a dialogue with a group of local leaders from diverse American Indian backgrounds and experiences,” the statement reads. “As an organization, our goal was to gain a better understanding of the issues facing American Indian communities in our region and explore opportunities to both raise awareness of American Indian cultures and celebrate the rich traditions of tribes with a historic connection to the Kansas City area.

“We recently expanded our efforts through consultation with a national organization that works closely on issues affecting American Indian people and tribes.”

The discussions led to the following policies and plans:

  • Fans will be prohibited from wearing headdresses into the stadium.
  • Face paint styled in a way that references or appropriates American Indian cultures and traditions will be prohibited.
  • The “Arrowhead Chop” celebration is undergoing a review process.
  • The team is looking at “options for a modified engagement moment from the Drum Deck that maintains a unifying effect between our fans and our players but better represents the spiritual significance of the drum in American Indian cultures.”
  • The Chiefs “will continue with many of the traditions that we have introduced over the past six years, including the Blessing of the Four Directions, the Blessing of the Drum, as well as inviting members of tribes with a historic connection to our region to participate in our American Indian Heritage Month Game.”
  • The team is looking at adopting a formalized education program.

The Chiefs’ discussions come on the heels of the Washington Football Team retiring the name “Redskins.”

Related content: Washington Retires ‘Redskins’ Name, Logo

Kansas City’s new protocols may be tested this season. According to ESPN, the Chiefs are planning to cap attendance for home games at 22% of Arrowhead's capacity due to COVID-19.

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