U.S. Congress advances slavery reparation proposals

U.S. lawmakers next Wednesday will consider a Bill to study paying reparations to descendants of enslaved people, which could open the door for a potential vote on an issue that has gained momentum in recent years.

On April 14, the House Judiciary Committee will hold the first-ever markup — the process by which committees debate and amend legislation — on a Bill that creates a commission to study and develop reparation proposals for Black people.

Friday’s announcement comes during the murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, who is accused of killing Black man George Floyd, whose death triggered nationwide protests highlighting the country’s racial injustice.

The Bill was first introduced more than 30 years ago but never advanced.

It addresses the period of slavery and discrimination in the U.S. from 1619 to the present day, and will propose remedies including financial reparations.

“The historic markup of HR 40 is intended to continue a national conversation about how to confront the brutal mistreatment of African Americans during chattel slavery, Jim Crow segregation, and the enduring structural racism that remains endemic to our society today,” House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler said.

Americans still face racial disparities in access to education, health care, housing, employment and other social provisions, he added.

President Joe Biden has repeatedly addressed the need to end systemic racism, and the White House has expressed support for the Commission.

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Printable version | May 18, 2021 2:13:04 AM |

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