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St. Paul adopts Indigenous People’s Day while still recognizing the Columbus Day holiday

The city council agreed to join other cities in recognizing Indigenous People’s Day. But it will still observe Columbus Day, too, as a state and national holiday.

The St. Paul City Council has joined Minneapolis, Seattle, Berkeley and other cities in recognizing Indigenous People’s Day on the second Monday in October.

That’s the day that most of the country celebrates Columbus Day.

The movement was begun as a way to honor Native American culture, and as a counter-celebration to Columbus Day and protest of the European conquest of North America (which had been “discovered” centuries earlier by native peoples).

Minneapolis renamed the day last year.

St. Paul will live in both worlds, as the council resolution says the city will recognize Indigenous People’s Day and continue to recognize Columbus Day as a state and federal holiday.

All seven council members sponsored the resolution, which was drafted by the city’s Human Rights and Equal Economic Opportunity Commission and members of the American Indian community.

City Council President Russ Stark said:

“This is a long overdue acknowledgment of the contributions of indigenous communities to our culture and society.”

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