RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney has proclaimed Monday, October 14, as Indigenous Peoples’ Day.
Stoney says Native Americans were the first residents of Richmond and it should be acknowledged.
“They were here before any non-natives arrived in this country, commonwealth, or city. So it’s only fitting, and about time, that we acknowledge and celebrate the many contributions they have made to shape our city,” said Stoney.
The mayor made the announcement on Thursday at City Hall in the presence of representatives from the Nottaway, Chickahominy, Patawomeck, Mattaponi, Upper Mattaponi, Cheroenhaka and Pamunkey Indian Tribes.
On Monday, the city is asking all employees to reflect upon the heritage and culture of Native Americans.
“While the federal government recognizes the second Monday in October each year as Columbus Day, the City of Richmond has never recognized Columbus Day as an employee holiday. The City of Richmond will again be open for business this Monday, but this year requests that employees and residents alike use Indigenous Peoples’ Day as an opportunity to reflect not only upon the culture and heritage of native peoples, but also to celebrate their influence, accomplishments and resilience in the face of extraordinary hardship.”