Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers (D) has signed an executive order declaring the second Monday of October, which is federally recognized as Columbus Day, Indigenous Peoples' Day.
Evers signed off on the measure at the Indian Community School in Franklin earlier on Tuesday. According to a local ABC station, students at the school had advocated for the new holiday after learning more about the history of the early Americans.
"Not too long into the subject, we found out that it wasn't Columbus. It was our ancestors," Annabelle Jaworski, a seventh-grade student at the school, told the station.
“Through this executive order, we recognize and appreciate our tribal nations and indigenous people and their resilience, wisdom and the contributions they make to our state,” Evers said of the signing, according to the station.
“Native Americans in Wisconsin and throughout our country have suffered unjust treatment — often at the hands of our government — and today is about recognizing that Wisconsin would not be all that it is without Indigenous people,” he continued.
According to the executive order, Wisconsin is home to eleven federally recognized tribes and nations. The order states that it affirms the sovereignty of the nations and also aims to recognize the “historic, cultural and contemporary significance” of the indigenous people in the region.
The measure said the “building of the state and its cities would not have been possible” without contributions from the indigenous people.
Though the declaration is important to local tribes, it has been met with opposition from some in the area.
Milwaukee Alderman Bob Donovan said he thinks the idea of celebrating Indigenous Peoples' Day on Columbus Day is “political correctness run amok,” according to the local station.
"I am not at all opposed to recognizing Native Americans, indigenous peoples to the Americas. No problem whatsoever. But I do have a problem when it's done at the expense of Christopher Columbus and Italians," he added.
The executive order follows a similar measure signed into law by Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt (R) earlier this year that recognized Native American Day on the same day as Columbus Day.