Black farmers are hoping for a major boost in their decadeslong struggle for racial and economic equity next year, anticipating that aggressive measures by the incoming Biden administration and Congress could expand their access to credit and address their discrimination complaints.
Black farmers have been pushing to stem the loss of millions of acres of land and farming operations due to financial hardship, a situation exacerbated by decades of systematic racial discrimination in the Agriculture Department’s lending and financial assistance programs. While the U.S. government has spent just over $2 billion to settle bias claims, groups representing Black farmers are pushing for more financial help for their members and new measures to strengthen civil rights protections at USDA.
President-elect Joe Biden promised to address these issues on the campaign trail and backed a list of reforms, including reinstating a foreclosure moratorium for farmers with unsettled civil rights complaints and the creation of an Equity Commission. Democratic lawmakers in the House and Senate also are planning to push for reforms next year.
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