(The Hill) – The California Reparations Task Force voted on Saturday to recommend a series of proposals that could see Black residents in the state receive billions of dollars in reparations, according to The Associated Press.
If approved by the California legislature and Gov. Gavin Newsom (D), the proposals would provide eligible Black residents with varying payments for the state’s discriminatory policies, including mass incarceration and over-policing, housing discrimination, and health care inequalities and environmental injustices.
Economists on the panel have said that the reparations could cost the state more than $800 million.
“Reparations are not only morally justifiable, but they have the potential to address longstanding racial disparities and inequalities,” Rep. Barbara Lee (D-Calif.) said at Saturday’s meeting, according to the AP.
Newsom signed a law creating the task force to study and recommend reparations for slavery in October 2020, as the nation continued reeling from the murder of George Floyd that May.
In a 500-page report released last year, the task force noted that “badges and incidents” of slavery “remain embedded in the political, legal, health, financial, educational, cultural, environmental, social, and economic systems of the United States of America.”
“Without a remedy specifically targeted to dismantle our country’s racist foundations and heal the injuries inflicted by colonial and American governments, the ‘badges and incidents of slavery’ will continue to harm African Americans in almost all aspects of American life,” the task force said.