Shamann Walton, a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors (Dist. 10) wants to create a plan to provide reparations to African Americans in the city.
Walton is not alone. Other African-American officials want the same, including San Francisco Unified School Board member Stevon Cook, former District 10 Supervisor Sophie Maxwell, and City College Trustee Shanell Williams.
“Reparations can be defined as providing what is owed to the descendants of slaves who were trafficked to and enslaved here in the United States,” Walton said. “The injustices and racism during the time of slavery still resonate in some of the policies and systems that exist today.”
He said that “we’ve been having a conversation about reparations for far too long in this city.”
Walton said he will soon introduce legislation to establish a working group that will draft a reparations plan. It could take six months to develop.
One example of reparations would be the basic income trial program that Stockton Mayor Michael Tubbs launched in 2019 to provide some low-income residents with $500 a month. Another possibility would be grants, not loans, to African-American business owners, the San Francisco Examiner reported.
Financial reparations are in order but that’s just a piece of what needs to be done, Walton said. “There are things that we need to do that are going to change some of the systems that are in place that continue to keep Black folks in poverty.”
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