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Black Farmers Demand Discrimination Settlement from Congress

John Boyd, the president of the National Black Farmers Association (NBFA) held a press conference Tuesday that called for Congress to approve legislation that will fund a historic discrimination settlement against black farmers. Under the settlement, which was reached out of court in 1999, qualified farmers could receive up to $50,000 each. The original case was between the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and black farmers and alleged that the USDA had discriminated on the basis of race when allocating farm loans. According to a National Black Farmer’s Association press release, the US House of Representatives passed a war appropriations supplemental bill in July that appropriated funds to pay the settlement. Late last week, a seventh attempt to approve the bill in the Senate failed when Republicans rejected a Democratic unanimous consent agreement. At the press conference, Boyd said, “We have all the senators saying that we are in an agreement to pay the black farmers. But instead of doing the right thing and compensating the black farmers, they are playing politics with the lives of black farmers,” reported the Epoch Times.

Sources:

National Black Farmers Association Press Release 9/6/10; The Epoch Times 9/7/10; CNN 9/7/10; NPR 9/7/10