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RELEASE: Senator Sanders praises passage of slavery reparations bill.

Bill Number 1163A Sponsored by Senator James Sanders Jr. Has Passed in the New York State Senate
Following over six years of hard work and consistency, Bill S1163A, sponsored by Senator James Sanders Jr., has passed. Alongside its passage in the Senate, the Assembly’s equivalent bill, Bill A7691 sponsored by Assemblymember Michaelle C. Solages, has also passed today. Meaning that one of the nation’s most controversial topics for decades has finally seen a solution in New York State. The bill passed with a 106-41 vote in the Assembly, and a 41-21 vote in the Senate.

If the bill is signed into law by Governor Hochul, New York will become just the second state in the country to pass quality legislation towards reparations.

As a result, reparations and remedies will be studied and established for African American communities who have felt the brutal and unjust generational impacts of the institution of slavery.

This is a win for our communities, and a historic moment for our great state and nation.

Senator James Sanders Jr., Assemblymember Michaelle C. Solages, and Senator Jabari Brisport, all champions of reparations legislation.

Senators and Assemblymembers join Senator Sanders and Assemblymember Solages after the passage of both bills.
What does the bill seek?

To acknowledge “the fundamental injustice, cruelty, brutality and inhumanity of slavery in the city of New York and the state of New York.”

This Bill is seeking justice for African Americans who have been denied the necessary reparations for too long by establishing a quality study and sensible remedies.
How will this be accomplished?

This bill, “establishes the New York state community commission on reparations remedies to examine the institution of slavery, subsequently de jure and de facto racial and economic discrimination against African-Americans, the impact of these forces on living African-Americans and to make recommendations on appropriate remedies; provides for the repeal of such provisions.”
Why is this important?

While the debate surrounding reparations has gained traction in recent years, the concept of reparations dates back centuries. Reparations have been discussed widely since the Reconstruction Era, following immediately after the Civil War.

For African American people across the state and nation, the generational impacts of slavery, segregation, institutional racism, voter suppression, red lining, and several others have been undoubtedly felt. How could we possibly live in an equitable world if these realities are not studied, identified, and remedied?

This bill works not to advantage some over others, or to pour funds into a completely new and understudied idea. Instead, it works towards equity and a reasonable solution for an old debate, that is both studied and proven.

“This is not simply a Black issue, this is an American issue…I am voting not only for God and my ancestors, but I am voting for the 50,000 New Yorkers who died to end this madness that is slavery, and would risk their lives again to ensure that this legacy that lingers in the nation is ended.”

-Senator James Sanders Jr.

View the Bill Here
Key Takeaways:
Bill S1163A (Senate)/ Bill A7691 (Assembly) has been introduced and passed in both chambers.
This bill establishes a New York State Community Commission to Study Reparations Remedies.
This is a historic moment for New York, and a monumental step forward for the nation.
In order to establish reparations appropriately, this study will dive into the generational impacts of slavery and segregation in New York to create the right reparations and remedies.
This bill aims to take a sensible approach towards the reparations debate, while still focusing on implementing reparations overall.