WASHINGTON — Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) said her constituents want to see reparations for descendants of slaves in the form of “direct payment.”
Tlaib hopes the House has a “serious conversation” about voting on H.R. 40, the Commission to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African-Americans Act, after the reparations hearing that took place last week in the House Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties.
“This is something that is very rooted in trying to combat what’s happened and continues to happen with black Americans not being actually able to get a level playing — on the same level after slavery,” Tlaib, who represents Michigan’s 13th congressional district, said on Capitol Hill.
“I support any opportunity for restorative justice and that can come up all above in some instances, but I think there’s a serious conversation happening in committee and I hope it continues to happen regarding reparations. But I guess it should be determined by all of us and I can tell you at home it is direct payment that people want to see but also increased access to higher education, to real equitable funding in education systems, right now, across the country,” she added.
Tlaib’s district, which contains parts of Detroit, used to be represented by former Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), the original sponsor of H.R. 40.
The legislation seeks to “address the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality, and inhumanity of slavery in the United States and the 13 American colonies between 1619 and 1865 and to establish a commission to study and consider a national apology and proposal for reparations for the institution of slavery, its subsequent de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, and the impact of these forces on living African-Americans, to make recommendations to the Congress on appropriate remedies, and for other purposes.”