FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 19, 2020
One Country Project Applauds the Justice for Black Farmers Act
Proposed legislation would right wrongs, address historic discrimination against Black farmers by USDA
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, One Country Project (OCP) endorsed the Justice for Black Farmers Act of 2020, legislation proposed by Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) that will address historic discrimination against Black farmers within the U.S. Department of Agriculture by ameliorating land loss issues, improving opportunities for new Black farmers, and providing support for all socially disadvantaged farmers.
“The roots of racial discrimination against Black people in agriculture run deep. While it can be traced back to the plantation era, such discrimination continues today. Black farmers deserve real opportunities to build generational wealth and become guardians of the land they have worked for generations,” said Alabama House Minority Leader and OCP Board Member Anthony Daniels. “Through increased investments, oversight, and accountability, we can begin to right these wrongs and repair the inequity sowed through the systemic discrimination in policies and programs. The Justice for Black Farmers Act is long overdue and will be a cornerstone in ensuring that Black farmers and their families have the tools they need to succeed.”
In addition to bolstering protections for farmers with pending civil rights complaints, the Act creates an Equitable Land Access Service within USDA and provides additional funding for the department to resolve farmland ownership and succession, improving opportunities for Black farmers to retain land they own and lowering barriers to land acquisition for aspiring Black farmers.
“The Justice for Black Farmers Act addresses historical wrongs while also supporting a vibrant and diverse community of farmers across the nation,” said OCP Board Member J.D. Scholten. “This legislation will not only help make USDA programs more equitable, but it will also usher in a new generation of farmers to help sustain America’s position as a leading agricultural producer, and strengthen protections for small and family farm operations.”
One Country Project encourages Congress to support the Justice for Black Farmers Act. Read more about the Act here.