Monday, both the Eau Claire City Council and Eau Claire School Board discussed resolutions to change Columbus Day to "Indigenous Peoples' Day" as a way to honor Native Americans.
Middle school students first brought the idea to the school board, who passed the resolution at their meeting on Monday.
At the city council meeting, the chambers were filled with a number of people who spoke on the issue. Roughly 15 people spoke in favor of the change.
"I was interested in having them consider my opinion to adopt the resolution to make the second Tuesday of October "Indigenous Peoples' Day" because I think it's important given the fact that we're here on land that was orginially inhabited by Native American tribes," said Eau Claire resident Ed Manydeeds.
Nobody at the public hearing spoke against "Indigenous Peoples' Day", but there were some who believed Columbus Day should not be abolished. The city council will vote on the resolution at the Tuesday meeting.
Posted: Oct. 09, 2017
Eau Claire (WQOW) -- The second Monday in October has been celebrated as "Columbus Day" as a federal holiday since 1937, but over the years, many cities and states are pushing for a change.
The change is being made to what is called, "Indigenous Peoples' Day."
The list of cities celebrating Native Americans on the federal holiday is growing over the years. According to CNN, more than 50 states and communities combined have taken measures to change the holiday. The City of Eau Claire may be added to that list in the near future.
"Indigenous Peoples' Day" celebrates Native Americans who settled on America's land before Christopher Columbus came to North America.
The Eau Claire City Council and the Eau Claire School Board are both looking at making changes to the holiday.
The city council will hold a public hearing on Monday, Oct. 9 at 7 p.m. on changing "Columbus Day" to "Indigenous Peoples' Day." The city council is slated to vote on the subject on Tuesday, Oct. 10.
The Eau Claire Area Public School District will take similar measures after North Star Middle School students proposed the name change at a previous school board meeting.
"Actually, at our last school board meeting, we had three middle school students from North Star who came to us and really talked to us about why they felt it should be recognized as 'Indigenous Peoples' Day' on the second Monday in October. I think it's really a testament to those students to stick up for what you believe in, and I'm really proud of those students. Tonight (Monday), we are going to be talking about that issue make a decision about that as well," said Joe Luginbill, with the Eau Claire School Board.
According to CNN, 25 years ago, Berkeley, California was the first city to start "Indigenous Peoples' Day" in 1992.
If passed by both the Eau Claire City Council and the Eau Claire School Board, "Columbus Day" may be celebrated differently in the Chippewa Valley as soon as 2018.