Posted on May 28, 2024

Reparations Package Clears California’s State Senate

Kathryn Palmer, USA Today, May 24, 2024

California lawmakers’ years-long effort to establish reparations for Black residents took a step forward this week after a package of proposals cleared the state Senate.

The three bills would create agencies and funding sources to begin compensating Black Californians after decades of racism and discrimination, coming off a two-year-long task force effort to develop reparation proposals. Democratic State Sen. Steven Bradford authored the three pieces of legislation. In comments to lawmakers Tuesday, he said California “bears great responsibility” in addressing injustices toward Black residents, including enslavement, segregation, stigmatization and discrimination, he said.

“These are not a handout or charity by any measure,” Bradford said. “It is what was promised. It is what is owed and what is 160 years overdue.”


The legislation package would establish a fund for reparation programs, compensate Black families and individuals whose property was seized via eminent domain and create an agency to help residents research their family lineage to apply for such restitution. They are among the most critical and ambitious proposals of the 14 reparation bills championed by California’s Legislative Black Caucus.