Illinois town becomes first to approve reparations for Black residents

A Chicago suburb in Illinois has become first place in the US to approve reparations for Black residents to compensate them for historical racism in the form of slavery, segregation and housing discrimination.

The Evanston city council voted to approve the first phase of reparations to provide $400,000 to 16 qualifying households, giving $25,000 each on home repairs or down payments on property.

“Right now the whole world is looking at Evanston, Illinois. This is a moment like none other that we’ve ever seen, and it’s a good moment,” said Ron Daniels, president of the National African American Reparations Commission.

The first-of-its-kind reparations programme was established in Evanston in 2019 with plans to commit $10 million over a decade by using funds from three per cent of the tax collected on marijuana sales.

Black residents would qualify for the housing programme if they or their ancestors lived in Evanston between the period of 1919 and 1969 or they could prove they were the victim of housing discrimination due to the cities policies.

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