Maryland African-American leaders green-light reparations resolution

Annapolis, Maryland - The Caucus of African American Leaders (CAAL) on Tuesday evening voted unanimously to put forward a resolution in Maryland calling for reparations for Black Americans.

The Caucus of African American Leaders is taking steps to advance the cause of reparative justice in Maryland with a new resolution.
The Caucus of African American Leaders is taking steps to advance the cause of reparative justice in Maryland with a new resolution.  © MARK WILSON / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

CAAL, a civic organization comprised of Black organizations, elected officials, and activists, has green-lighted efforts to present a reparations resolution before the City of Annapolis, Anne Arundel County, and the State of Maryland.

Forming a committee or commission to develop a reparations plan is the first step toward addressing the ongoing legacy of chattel slavery, Jim Crow, and present-day structural racism in the "Free State," proponents say.

In particular, advocates are demanding compensation for discriminatory housing policies and displacement of Black communities in Annapolis during the urban renewal period, in addition to comprehensive policies to address racial disparities across wealth, education, employment, health, and the criminal legal system.

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"I'm inspired," Carl Snowden, the convenor of CAAL, told ABC after the successful vote. "This is the time to energize, mobilize, and organize people of good will to make this happen."

Maryland reparations resolution to go before lawmakers

The resolution is set to go before Annapolis Mayor Gavin Buckley next week, before it is presented to Maryland Governor Wes Moore and Anne Arundel County Executive Steuart Pittman in August.

Earlier this year, a bill to create a Maryland Reparations Commission was reintroduced in the state legislature but subsequently withdrawn by its primary sponsor.

The latest effort at securing reparative justice in Maryland comes after the California Reparations Task Force released its final report and recommendations in June, with New York and New Jersey seeking to follow suit. Cities around the country – from Evanston, Illinois, to San Francisco, California – are also taking steps to reckon with their history of racial discrimination.

Cover photo: MARK WILSON / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

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