Mayor Lucas joins coalition to bring reparations to Black Kansas Citians

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Mayor Quinton Lucas. // Courtesy KC Government

Mayor Quinton Lucas is pledging reparations for Black residents of Kansas City as part of a committee including 10 other mayors across the US. Mayors Organized for Reparations and Equity (MORE), is a coalition of 11 mayors committed to paying reparations to Black residents in their community and modeling how future federal programs might work.

The announcement took place on Friday and is the largest city-led effort to pay reparations in history.

The idea of reparations for Black Americans has been locked in a conversation that has hardly moved beyond theory since the end of the Civil War. The members of Mayors Organized for Reparations & Equity (MORE) are committed to moving that needle with action and advocacy that points toward justice and healing the wounds of history,” a statement from MORE says.

The coalition is founded by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and co-chaired by Denver Mayor Michael Hancock. Along with Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas, St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones is also a sitting member.

Although there are no details yet on what the specifics of the plan in Kansas City will look like, Mayor Lucas says, “It’s not taking already existing, tax dollars in Kansas City to spend them on a whole bunch of folks. Instead, it’s saying as money is coming into the cities, particularly through federal programs and federal grants, how do we make sure we’re doing it and spending it in places where it can make the biggest and longest-term impacts.”

The announcement by MORE followed President Biden’s decision to sign a bill declaring Juneteenth a federal holiday, commemorating the end of slavery in the United States.

Mayor Lucas’s decision also follows a growing push to consider reparations for Black citizens. Last year, California created its own commission to conduct studies on the idea of reparations, the first of its kind.

Categories: Politics