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Chicago’s City Council Passed “First-In-Nation Reparations.”

In case you are not aware back in 2019 a reparations fund was created by Evanston (Chicago City Council). Not only has it been acknowledged, but it has now been passed, However; it is not yet clear how the funds/resources will be distributed to the families deserving of the reparations. It is said through the funds the money can be used for home improvements, buying a home, & paying mortgages. Before being passed it was said $400,000 would be distributed to black residents who are tied to the black community of Chicago between the years of 1919 & 1969.

Statement by ALD Cicely L. Flemming:

“Rather than reparations dictating to Black people what they need and how they will receive it, we need to listen more to the people,” she said. “There is no autonomy for the community that was harmed, instead of cash payments or other options that respect the humanity and self-determination of Black people, and allow them to determine how best to repair themselves, the housing program is restrictive.”

Statement by Rose Cannon:

“We want cash payments”

Kamm Howard, co-chair of the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America virtually testified stating 5 valid & key elements of reparations:

They are: government structures to make certain it doesn’t happen again; restitution to make victims whole for disparities in education, health care, life expectancy and economic opportunity; compensation if restitution does not suffice; “satisfaction” through things like apologies, curriculum change and monuments; and “rehabilitation of the heart, mind and spirit.”

“Flash back to the Jon Burge reparations. Each of these areas was addressed in one initiative in the [$5.5 million] reparations that they got. They got a monument. They got curriculum change. They got compensation. They got a process in which torture does not happen again,” Howard said.

“It could happen to us in this city. You already did it in the case of Jon Burge. You could do it for all Black people in this city.”

Statement by Jason Ervin made in a meeting to his city council colleagues:

“Until we deal with the issue of reparations in the city of Chicago, there’s no way in hell we can support direct payments to anybody other than the American descendants of slaves in the city of Chicago.”

Statement made by Michael Scott Jr. siding with Jason Ervin:

“It’s not an either-or vote. But unless that conversation happens around descendants of slaves first and foremost, I don’t think this issue can move forward.”

“I’m speaking for myself as an African American in the city of Chicago. It is important that that conversation [about reparations] be held first. It can be held together. But there needs to be a prioritization of reparations… If it is not talked about as something that is going to focus on descendants of slaves first, that is a non-starter for me.”

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