California Reparations Task Force Releases Detailed Report on the Harms of Slavery and Racism in the U.S.; Propose Specific Remedies

After intensive research, the California Task Force to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African Americans reached those conclusions and made concrete recommendations to compensate those affected.

By Stacy M. Brown
NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent

Federal and state governments, including California, failed to protect Black artists, culture-makers, and media-makers from discrimination and simultaneously promoted discriminatory narratives.

Further, state governments memorialized the Confederacy as just and heroic through monument building while suppressing the nation’s history of racism and slavery.

Government actions at every level across the country, including California, have directly segregated, and discriminated against African Americans at work.

After intensive research, the California Task Force to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African Americans reached those conclusions and made concrete recommendations to compensate those affected.
The group issued its interim report to state legislators on June 1.

Separate from the federal proposal pushed by Texas Democratic Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, the report surveyed ongoing, and compounding harms experienced by African Americans because of slavery.
It also studied the lingering effects the slave trade had on America.

The report includes a set of preliminary recommendations for policies that legislatures in the Golden State could adopt to remedy the harms.

Officials plan to release a final report next year.
“Federal and state policies like affirmative action produced mixed results and were short-lived,” Task Force members wrote in the report. “African Americans continue to face employment discrimination today in the country and California,” members wrote.

They determined that the American government at all levels, including in California, has historically criminalized African Americans for social control and maintaining an economy based on exploited Black labor.
“This criminalization is an enduring badge of slavery and has contributed to the over-policing of Black neighborhoods, the school to prison pipeline, the mass incarceration of African Americans, a refusal to accept African Americans as victims, and other inequities in nearly every corner of the American and California legal systems,” the report authors stated.

“As a result, the American and California criminal justice system physically harms, imprisons, and kills African Americans more than other racial groups relative to their percentage of the population.”

The authors continued:
“The government actions described in this report have had a devastating effect on the health of African Americans in the country and California.
“Compared to white Americans, African Americans live shorter lives and are more likely to suffer and die from almost all diseases and medical conditions than white Americans.

“Researchers have linked these health outcomes in part to African Americans’ unrelenting experience of racism in our society. In addition to physical harm, African Americans experience psychological harm, which can profoundly undermine Black children’s emotional and physical well-being and academic success.”

The Task Force has recommended several remedies, including:
• Implement a detailed program of reparations for African Americans.
• Develop and implement other policies, programs, and measures to close the racial wealth gap in California.
• Provide funding, and technical assistance to Black-led and Black community-based land trusts to support wealth building and affordable housing.
• Establish a cabinet-level secretary position over an African American/Freedmen Affairs Agency tasked with implementing the recommendations of this task force.

They said the agency would identify past harms, prevent future harm, and work with other state agencies and branches of California’s government to mitigate the wrongs.

The Task Force suggested policies to the Governor and the Legislature designed to compensate for the harms caused by the legacy of anti-Black discrimination and work to eliminate systemic racism that has developed because of the enslavement of African Americans in the United States.

The authors recommended that the agency include the following:
• A branch to process claims with the state and assist claimants in filing for eligibility.
• A genealogy branch to support potential claimants with genealogical research and to confirm eligibility.
• A reparations tribunal to adjudicate substantive claims for past harms.
• An office of immediate relief to expedite claims.
• A civic engagement branch to support ongoing political education on African American history and to support civic engagement among African American youth.
• A freedmen education branch to offer free education and to facilitate the free tuition initiative between claimants and California schools.
• A social services and family affairs branch to identify and mitigate how current and previous policies have damaged and destabilized Black families.
• Services might include treatment for trauma and family healing services to strengthen the family unit, stress resiliency services, financial planning services, career planning, and civil and family court services.
• A cultural affairs branch to restore African American cultural/historical sites; establish monuments; advocate for the removal of racist relics; support knowledge production and archival research; and provide support for African Americans in the entertainment industry, including identifying and removing barriers to advancement into leadership and decision-making positions in the arts, entertainment, and sports industries.
• A legal affairs office to coordinate a range of free legal services, including criminal defense attorneys for criminal trials and parole hearings; free arbitration and mediation services; and to advocate for civil and criminal justice reforms.
• A division of medical services for public and environmental health.
• A business affairs office to provide ongoing education related to entrepreneurialism and financial literacy, offer business grants, and establish public-private reparative justice-oriented partnerships.

October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit

As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.

Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.

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