USDA Hikes Discrimination Awards for Hispanics

Judicial Watch, January 26, 2012

The U.S. government’s minority cash giveaway for “discriminated” farmers has reached a new level, with an improved process that makes it faster and easier for Hispanics to get awards much larger than previously announced.

The goal is to make amends to those who suffered discrimination when seeking farm loans from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the agency charged with doling out billions in reparation money. A few years ago black farmers got $1.25 billion to settle discrimination allegations and last summer the Obama Administration announced a new pot of “compensation” cash—$1.33 billion—for women and Hispanics.

Originally, under that plan, Hispanics who felt they were victims of USDA discrimination could get up to $50,000 to make up for their suffering. To get the word out the feds launched an impressive bilingual advertising and public relations campaign that includes national outreach tours by top USDA officials as well as Justice Department bigwigs because that agency is sort of overseeing it.

This month the USDA quietly increased the amount of money that each discriminated Hispanic farmer can collect by five times, to $250,000. The agency also announced an “updated claims process” that simplifies and speeds things up so the victims can get their government cash faster. {snip}

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Under Obama, the agency has served as a key tool to help minorities through a variety of costly programs, mainly the First Lady’s $4.5 billion effort to bring affordable healthy foods to inner cities nationwide. Under the plan, the USDA has dispersed huge sums of money to community groups that promise to make available affordable healthy foods in poor neighborhoods.

The agency has also allocated $8.8 million to train “underserved” Hispanic students to someday work for it. {snip}

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