The Movement for Black Lives hereby dedicates this Monday – caught between Black Friday and Giving Tuesday – to reparations. We call for reimagining relationships, repairing harm, and reorganizing our economies to end the war on Black people.

Giving Tuesday has become a national day for making fundraising appeals and moving money towards nonprofits, but it supports an already unequal system where the organizations with the largest PR budgets – and often the whitest staff – receive the bulk of these donations.

It also entrenches a practice of transactional giving to strategies that have short-term outcomes, rather than building longer term power in investing in movements by bringing about systemic change.

This year, we need to do things differently.

How can you bring about Reparations now

  1. GET EDUCATED ABOUT REPARATIONS
    Download our toolkit, ReperationsNow, that explores the long history of struggles for reparations for Black people, and what you can do to further this fight.
  2. JOIN THE MOVEMENT
    Our movement has made Reparations are pillar within our Vision for Black Lives. Text REPARATIONS to 90975 and join a network of Black-led, Black-facing organizations working towards making reparations a reality.
  3. TELL STORIES
    Engage with folks in your network about what the actualities of reparations really are. Tell the successes and the struggles. Raise awareness. The biggest barriers to support for reparations is a narrative-based one. Share the message about what reparations are and what they are not.
  4. HELP PASS LEGISLATION
    On Juneteenth of 2019 (June 19, 2019), the Congressional House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on legislation – H.R.40 – that would establish a Commission to study the question of reparations for Black people in the United States. But there’s so much more to do.

Our Reparations
Demands

We demand reparations for past and continuing harms. All who have benefited from Black people’s legacy and continued oppression, including nations, states, and cities, individuals and families, corporations, and institutions — from colonialism to slavery through food and housing redlining, mass incarceration, and surveillance — must repair the harm done. This includes:

  1. Reparations for the systemic denial of access to high quality educational opportunities in the form of full and free access for all Black people (including undocumented and currently and formerly incarcerated people) to lifetime education including: free access and open admissions to public community colleges and universities, technical education (technology, trade and agricultural), educational support programs, retroactive forgiveness of student loans, and support for lifetime learning programs.
  2. Reparations for the continued divestment from, discrimination toward and exploitation of our communities in the form of a guaranteed minimum livable income for all Black people, with clearly articulated corporate regulations.
  3. Reparations for the wealth extracted from our communities through environmental racism, slavery, food apartheid, housing discrimination and racialized capitalism in the form of corporate and government reparations focused on healing ongoing physical and mental trauma, and ensuring our access and control of food sources, housing and land.
  4. Reparations for the cultural and educational exploitation, erasure, and extraction of our communities in the form of mandated public school curriculums that critically examine the political, economic, and social impacts of colonialism and slavery, and funding to support, build, preserve, and restore cultural assets and sacred sites to ensure the recognition and honoring of our collective struggles and triumphs.

Defining Reparations

In this section, we define what reparations are and what they are not. The section also explores how to apply the definition of reparations to specific harms experienced by people of African descent in the United States.

Case Studies on Reparations

Check our four campaigns to secure reparations for specific harms to Black people or disproportionately experienced by Black people in the United States. Each campaign sought a variety of remedies and each used different combinations of strategies. Each faced critical challenges and can teach us important lessons about how to envision, develop, implement, and evaluate reparations campaigns around our issues and in our communities.

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Vision for Black Lives 2.0

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