ELLICOTT CITY, Md. (WJZ) — Beginning this year, Howard County will no longer celebrate Columbus Day.

The county is joining a growing list of communities replacing Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples’ Day.

READ MORE: Baltimore City Council Approves Emergency Security Deposit Relief Act, Awaits Mayor Signature


“We’re pleased to take another step to rectify and recognize the impact of Native Americans and Indigenous people whose land we occupy today,” County Executive Calvin Ball said in a news release. “Celebrating Indigenous People’s Day does not absolve us from our history, but we hope that it sets a tone and opens up discussions on the importance of restorative practices throughout our government and our community.”

Columbus Day, a federal holiday, is celebrated on the second Monday of October to mark Christopher Columbus’ arrival in North America.

READ MORE: 31 People Shot In One Week In Baltimore; Mayor, Commissioner, State’s Attorney Announce Plan To Stop Violence

>>WJZ has a new news app! Download it now!<<

Columbus has become an increasingly polarizing figure, leading protesters to tear down a statue of the explorer in Baltimore’s Little Italy neighborhood on July 4. The group threw the statue into the Inner Harbor where it was later recovered.

A city council vote to return the statue to its original owners earlier this month was delayed by two weeks.

MORE NEWS: 33-Year-Old Woman Killed In Crash In Pasadena

Also on Tuesday, Howard County announced the creation of the 16-member La Alianza Latina Workgroup, which officials said will address concerns of the county’s Latino and immigrant communities.

CBS Baltimore Staff