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Boston People's Reparations Commission
Activists call for Boston City Council to pass reparations bill

BOSTON (WHDH) - Community activists are calling for Boston’s mayor and City Council to pass a reparations bill.

The bill would create a committee to study the city’s Black community and figure out how to best support the descendants of enslaved people.

“The legacy of those slaves still exists, it still persists in the City of Boston,” said Rev. Kevin Peterson, founder of the New Democracy Coalition. “And we are seeking justice, where we can make right the wrongs of Boston’s past.”

The City Council would have to vote on the bill before its session ends on Wednesday, December 14.

Boston takes rare step of apologizing for its role in slavery and its lasting harm

BOSTON — Boston has just become the first major city to offer a formal apology for its role in trans-Atlantic slavery.

Coming nearly four centuries after slavery began here, a city council resolution that passed unanimously Wednesday condemns the unique "dastardliness" of slavery, and its legacy of "systemic white supremacy and racism" that's reflected in ongoing racial inequities in housing, education, income and more. The city council offered its "deepest and most sincere apology," and acknowledged "responsibility in [...] the death, misery and deprivation" that slavery caused.

The resolution, which is non-binding, pledges "efforts to repair past and present harm done to Black Americans," to remove "prominent anti-Black symbols" in the city, and to increase public education on how the slave trade "impacted Boston's past and present systems of oppression."

Council votes to study reparations for Black Bostonians

BOSTON (AP) — The Boston City Council voted Wednesday to form a task force to study how it can provide reparations for and other forms of atonement to Black Bostonians for the city’s role in slavery and its legacy of inequality.

The unanimous vote means Boston now joins a conversation about reparations that is happening across the country from Providence, Rhode Island to California.

Early Recommendations to the Boston Reparations Task Force

In the late winter, this year, Boston Mayor Michelle Wu announced the membership of the city’s Reparations Task Force. The rollout punctuated nearly 4 years of grassroots activism that called upon the city to account for its complicity in the transatlantic slave trade where Africans and Black Americans were sold in Boston as human chattel, exploited of their labor and victimized through centuries of structural racism.

“I recognize that there were persons who have come from other countries who are here…What the reality is, the devastation and the insidiousness that was rendered upon Black people is well documented from the slave trade,” said Attorney Joe Feaster in an interview following his appointment as chair of the task force

Tear it Down_Material Culture and Reparations

In response to the solidarity anti-racism protests triggered by the brutal murder of George Floyd, the INOSAAR is hosting a series of roundtables and panel discussions. 

This first roundtable was held on Thursday 2 July 2020. It aimed think through the recent (or planned) removal of statues, such as the enslaver Colston in Bristol, and/or the renaming of streets and squares, such as Dudley Square in Boston and the current movement to rename Faneuil Hall. 

Resolution apologizing for Boston's role in slavery approved

BOSTON — Boston’s city council unanimously approved a resolution Wednesday apologizing for the Massachusetts capital’s role in the trans-Atlantic slave trade.

The resolution, which is non-binding, pledges the city will remove “prominent anti-Black symbols” and educate residents on the history of Boston's slave trade, among other things. But it stops short of committing the city to funding any specific policies or programs to atone for slavery’s harms, such as paying reparations.

Councilor Tania Fernandes Anderson, who proposed the resolution, said after the vote that the formal apology represents “an opening salvo” as the city looks to address the harms caused by slavery.

NightSide with Dan Rea - Rundown for December 15, 2022

Boston to Study Reparations. The Boston City Council has approved a committee to study reparations for Black Bostonians. The committee will study Boston’s role in the transatlantic slave trade and how best to provide atonement for the harm done. Rev. Kevin Peterson joins Dan to discuss.

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