The Kansas City Chiefs will have a limited number of fans for their games at Arrowhead Stadium this season. However, there will be new policies for fans during games when it comes to wearing Native American imagery. On Thursday, the Chiefs announced fans will no longer be allowed to wear Native American headdresses and face paint during games. The team is also reviewing the Arrowhead Chop and "plans to have additional discussions in the future."
"In 2014, we began a dialogue with a group of local leaders from diverse American Indian backgrounds and experiences," the Chiefs said in a statement. "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."
The team went on to say the conversations they had with the American Indian Community Working Group helped "educate ourselves and our fans," which led to them making the decision to ban Native American headdresses and face paint. One thing to note is face painting is still allowed but it can't be "styled in a way that references or appropriates American Indian cultures and traditions."
"We are grateful for the meaningful conversations we have had with all of these American Indian leaders," the team stated. "It is important that we continue the dialogue on these significant topics, and we look forward to continuing to work together in the future."
The move comes shortly after Washington Football Team retired the name "Redskins" and the Native American logo. Also, the Atlanta Braves are making small changes while taking a closer look at their chop celebration.
The announcement of banning Native American headdresses and face paint was also made after the Chiefs made the decision to allowing fans to attended games during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Chiefs are only allowing 22% capacity in the stadium, which means there will be 16,000 people to see the Chiefs in action. Kansas City will start the season on Sept. 10 when they face the Houston Texans. Before the game, it's likely the Chiefs will celebrate their Super Bowl win, the team's first championship in 50 years.