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In this still frame from circa 1961 WJAR-TV newsreel footage, provided by the Rhode Island Historical Society, an armored military vehicle is used to demolish a residential building in what was then known as the Lippitt Hill neighborhood, in Providence, R.I. (WJAR-TV / Rhode Island Historical Society via AP)

The approach builds off the blueprint in Evanston, a Chicago suburb that became the first in the nation to begin paying reparations last year with a program providing Black residents grants for mortgage payments and home repairs, in acknowledgement of the historic discrimination Black people endured when trying to buy homes.

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(benscripps / Pixabay)

The program, which is expected to include 5,000 Chicago households, will study whether a universal basic income could reduce poverty in the city. Applications will close at 11:59 p.m. May 13.

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Robin Rue Simmons, alderwoman of Evanston’s 5th Ward and a fourth generation Black resident poses for a portrait in her home in Evanston, Ill., Friday, April 9, 2021.  (AP Photo / Shafkat Anowar, File)

The state’s reparations task force tackled the divisive issue of which Black residents should be eligible — it narrowly decided in favor of limiting compensation to the descendants of free and enslaved Black people who were in the U.S. in the 19th century.

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Mayor Lori Lightfoot presides over a virtual Chicago City Council meeting on Wednesday, June 17, 2020.

The City Council’s Subcommittee on Reparations has met only once since it was formed in June 2020, and Ald. Stephanie Coleman (16th Ward), the chair of the subcommittee, told WTTW News that her efforts to schedule additional meetings have been unsuccessful.

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(benscripps / Pixabay)

A lottery will determine which Chicagoans suffering from the economic catastrophe unleashed by the COVID-19 pandemic will get $500 per month for a year as part of an effort to study whether a universal basic income could reduce poverty in the city.

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(benscripps / Pixabay)
More than a year after it was formed, the City Council’s Subcommittee on Reparations has met only once, and that meeting was sidetracked by a series of speakers who demanded that aldermen ban pet stores from selling dogs, cats and rabbits at a profit to restrict the operations of breeders.
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Shepard Thomas, a recent Georgetown University graduate and a descendant of slaves sold by Jesuits to keep the school open, poses for a portrait on the campus in Washington on Thursday, May 6, 2021.  (AP Photo / Jacquelyn Martin)

Student and community activists from New England to the Deep South are demanding institutions take more ambitious steps to atone for past sins — from colonial-era slavery to more recent campus expansion projects that have pushed out entire communities of color.

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Reparations, equitable recovery top of mind for some residents

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Downtown Evanston (WTTW News)

Located along the lakefront just north of Chicago, Evanston is known for its dining scene, arts and culture, and Northwestern University. But it also has a history of racial segregation and redlining, which city leaders hope to address through a historic reparations program that passed in March.

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Evanston has become the first city in the country to offer reparations for Black residents. Last week, aldermen voted to distribute $10 million over the next 10 years, using tax money from the sale of recreational marijuana. We discuss the local and national outlook.

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(benscripps / Pixabay)

“These conversations are a slap in the face to people that have suffered great atrocities over time in this country," said Ald. Jason Ervin, the chairman of the City Council Black Caucus.

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Downtown Evanston (WTTW News)

Using tax money from the sale of recreational marijuana, the Chicago suburb of Evanston has become the first U.S. city to make reparations available to its Black residents for past discrimination and the lingering effects of slavery.

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(benscripps / Pixabay)

Aldermen on Thursday said they would do more than just talk about whether the city should pay reparations to Chicagoans who are the descendants of enslaved African Americans, but acknowledged that it had taken too long to even begin the discussion.

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Daniel Biss (WTTW News via Zoom)

One of Chicago's most populous suburbs is soon to have a leader who’s familiar statewide. Former state legislator and gubernatorial candidate Daniel Biss won the election for mayor of Evanston this week with nearly 74% of the vote. 

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Mayor Lori Lightfoot presides over a virtual Chicago City Council meeting on Wednesday, June 17, 2020.

The Chicago City Council on Wednesday recognized Juneteenth, which commemorates the end of slavery in the United States, but stopped short of making June 19 an official city holiday.

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Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th Ward) speaks about the Police Free Schools Ordinance on Tuesday, June 16, 2020. (WTTW News)

Protesters across the city and nation continue to push for police reforms that some elected officials say should include defunding the police. That’s just one of the topics on the City Council’s packed agenda Wednesday.

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(Ken Teegardin / Flickr)

Chicago will not create a commission to study whether — and how — the city should pay reparations to Chicagoans who are the descendants of enslaved African Americans after Mayor Lori Lightfoot objected to the long-in-the-works effort.