Cheyenne River Sioux Say No to Washington NFL Team Donations

By Kenrya Rankin Aug 07, 2015

While fighting to hold on to full use of its name, the Washington NFL team is using its nonprofit arm, the Original Americans Foundation, to—in the words of team owner Dan Snyder—“provide meaningful and measurable resources that provide genuine opportunities for Tribal communities.” But the Cheyenne River Sioux tribal council isn’t interested.

On August 5, 2015, the council voted to reject a $25,000 check that the foundation sent to the Cheyenne River Rodeo Association, and passed a motion that says:

The Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe reject any and all payments received or payments negotiated from the Washington Redskins and/or their organization the Washington Redskins Original Americans foundation, and that Chairman Harold Frazier and the tribe cease all unsanctioned communication with the Washington Redskins and any group or person associated with them.

A team spokesperson told the Washington Post that the foundation has spent millions of dollars to support almost 250 projects with more than 50 federally recognized tribes.

Activists have been trying to force the team to drop the team name for years, and in July 2015, a judge ordered that the team’s trademark registrations must be canceled because the name disparages Native Americans.