Detroit Evening Report: Detroit City Council names reparations task force members

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Detroit Reparations Task Force Announcement

Detroit City Council President Mary Sheffield has announced the members of the city’s reparations task force.

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A ballot initiative was passed by more than 80% of Detroiters during the November 2021 election to create the body.

Sheffield says the formation of the 13-member task force is about creating economic opportunities for the Black community in Detroit.

“This work is not about handouts — it is about quantifying and acknowledging the pain and the suffering of our ancestors and our people,” says Sheffield. “It is about creating generational wealth and creating economic mobility and opportunity in the Black community.”

Detroit City Council voted earlier this week to appoint the executive and general members of the taskforce: Rev. Dr. Joann Watson, Dorian Tyus, Keith Williams and Lauren Hood are heading up the committee.

“For folks that say it will never happen, just to get to this moment was somebody’s wildest dream,” Hood said at a Friday press conference. “Can you imagine what freedom looked like to a slave? People were like, ‘That’s impossible. That would never happen.’ So anybody who in this moment thinks that reparations are not possible, look what we’ve done so far.”

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  • Tia Graham
    Tia Graham is a reporter and Weekend Edition Host for 101.9 WDET. She graduated from Michigan State University where she had the unique privilege of covering former President Barack Obama and his trip to Lansing in 2014.