The reparations committee for San Francisco will set forth a strategy this spring to distribute $5 million in reparations to each long-time Black resident of the city.
Those who meet the requirements must be at least 18 years old and have identified themselves as black on public records for at least ten years. In addition, they must meet two of many criteria, such as having spent 13 years in the city after being born there or immigrating there between 1940 and 1996.
If the idea is approved, it is unknown exactly how many individuals would be eligible, but if even 10,000 people did, the cost would be at least $50 billion.
In June, the plan will be presented to Mayor London Breed, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, and the San Francisco Human Rights Commission. Board President Aaron Peskin expressed optimism for the proposal’s success to the San Francisco Chronicle.
They were revealed a few weeks after California’s Reparations Task Force’s head alleged that the state owed black citizens $1 million apiece in reparations.
The paper contains other recommendations, but the $5 million payout to eligible San Francisco residents is only the start.
‘A lump sum payment would compensate the affected population for the decades of harms that they have experienced and will redress the economic and opportunity losses that Black San Franciscans have endured, collectively, as the result of both intentional decisions and unintended harms perpetuated by City policy.’
A number of additional conditions are also listed in the proposal, including the establishment of a “comprehensive debt forgiveness program” that would cancel student and housing loans as well as credit card bills and other types of debt.
The proposal said that ‘Black households are more likely to hold costlier, riskier debt, and are more likely to have outstanding student loan debt.’ ‘When this is combined with lower household incomes, it can create an inescapable cycle of debt. Eliminating this debt gives Black households an opportunity to build wealth.’
The plan also states that over the following 250 years, qualified low-income households should receive an income supplement to equal the city’s median income, which is $97,000 in 2022.
The draft report claims that The proposal also says qualifying low-income households should have their income supplemented to match the city’s median income – $97,000 in 2022 – for the next 250 years.
‘Racial disparities across all metrics have led to a significant racial wealth gap in the City of San Francisco.’
‘By elevating income to match AMI, Black people can better afford housing and achieve a better quality of life.’
Other ideas include tax incentives, financial education, legal safeguards for people’s reparations, investments in San Francisco’s black community, legal protections for investments, and hiring black-owned institutions to manage people’s money.
The proposal also requests that San Francisco to ‘issue a formal apology for past harms, and commit to making substantial ongoing, systemic and programmatic investments in Black communities to address historical harms.’
Although slavery was never permitted in California, the state served as a shelter for slaveholders during the time.
The plan also makes reference to a number of city programs from earlier decades that, according to research, had negative impacts on the black community and were driven by racial animus.
Some of these were as straightforward as early legislative limitations on the places in the city where black people may reside and the sorts of employment they could have.
Others were more extensive, such as citywide zoning regulations that effectively confined black neighborhoods to ghettos or completely destroyed them, leaving them abandoned for years.
People who fulfill a variety of additional standards, in addition to the race, age, and time spent residing in San Francisco, would be entitled to the payments.
The ability to prove ancestry from a slave as well as having been impacted by or derived directly from someone who was impacted by urban renewal and other policies in the 1900s are additional requirements.
Candidates may also qualify if they can show that they attended San Francisco public schools during desegregation or that they are directly descended from someone who was imprisoned during the War on Drugs campaign or who has been imprisoned themselves as a result of the program.
In June, the proposal will be delivered to the authorities in San Francisco.
According to Peskin, head of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, ‘There are so many efforts that result in incredible reports that just end up gathering dust on a shelf.’
He said, ‘We cannot let this be one of them.’
The Board of Supervisors hired the San Francisco African American Reparations Advisory Committee [AARAC] to put together the plan. It was initially delivered to the top brass in December.
Eric McDonnell, head of AARAC, told the SF Chronicle that ‘Centuries of harm and destruction of black lives, black bodies, and black communities should be met with centuries of repair.’ He continued, ‘If you look at San Francisco, it’s very much a tale of two cities.’
The ideas from San Francisco came after Kamilah Moore, the leader of California’s Reparations Task Force, revealed her demands for retribution.
Any black Californians who are descended from slaves, according to her, are awarded $1 million apiece.
Moore said that California owes $223,500 to any Black citizen who had experienced housing discrimination at the hands of the Golden State.
She said that between 1933 and 1977, redlining—the practice of denying loans like mortgages to those who are less fortunate—kept many black Californians in poverty.
Although implementing the recommendations would be extremely expensive, Moore is adamant that doing so will boost California’s economy by encouraging consumer spending.
All qualifiers must fulfill the following requirements at the time of enactment:
– Be at least 18 years old
– Have identified as ‘Black/African American’ on public records for at least 10 years
All qualifiers must also fulfill two of the following requirements:
– Be born in the city between 1940 and 1996, and be able to provide proof of residency covering 13 years
– Have migrated to the city between 1940 and 1996, and be able to provide proof of residency covering 13 years
– Have been imprisoned during the War on Drugs campaign or be directly descended from somebody who was
– Have attended city public schools during the desegregation
– Be a descendant of somebody who was enslaved in the United States before 1865
– Have been or are descended from somebody displaced during San Francisco’s Urban Renewal project between 1954 and 1973
– Have been or are descended from a Certificate of Preference holder
– Be a part of a marginalized demographic that experienced lending prejudice between 1937 and 1968, or experienced the effects of those practices between 1968 and 2008