Movement for Black Lives Releases Demands, Calls for Reparations
On Monday, a coalition of organizations involved in the Movement for Black Lives released a list of specific policy demands to the public, entitled “A Vision for Black Lives.”
Fifty organizations from all over the world came together over the past year to formulate and write the demands, including the Black Youth Project 100, Million Hoodies, and the Black Lives Matter Network. The demands encompass six key platforms: 1) End the War on Black People; 2) Reparations; 3) Invest-Divest; 4) Economic Justice; 5) Community Control; and 6) Political Power.
According to the platform, the demands are based on a vision of collective liberation and restorative justice for all marginalized people, with a particular focus on state violence against black people. The platform uplifts possibilities for radical change for the future, but also proposes solutions for the current state of black oppression.
Key demands call for sweeping criminal justice reformation, including divestment from police and investment in black communities. The reparations demand is for “past and continuing harms” including colonialism, slavery, redlining, mass incarceration and surveillance.
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Appropriate repayment for this history would encompass free and full access to education, a guaranteed minimum livable income, corporate and government reparations, reparations for and the establishment of an educational curriculum inclusive of black history and contributions, and the passage of H.R. 40, a bill that recognizes the United States’ sordid history of slavery and racism and explores possibilities for reparations.
The Guardian reports that the coalition spokesperson, Michaela Brown from Baltimore Bloc, said in a statement that the coalition seeks “radical transformation and not reactionary reform.”
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“As the 2016 election continues this platform provides us with a way to intervene with an agenda that resists state and corporate power, an opportunity to implement policies that truly value the safety and humanity of Black lives, and an overall means to hold elected leaders accountable.”
These bold demands provide detailed policy proposals for all who are interested in moving the Black Lives Matter movement forward. Enacting the demands will require significant investment and advocacy work, yet these are important examples of tangible ways black lives can be improved and opportunities to address and correct the United States’ long history of racism and discrimination.
Photo Credits: Flickr