Assembly Bill 3121 (AB 3121) was enacted on September 30, 2020 and establishes the Task Force to Study and Develop Reparation Proposals for African Americans (Task Force or Reparations Task Force). AB 3121 charges the California Department of Justice with providing administrative, technical, and legal assistance to the Task Force.
The institution of slavery is inextricably woven into the establishment, history, and prosperity of the United States. Constitutionally and statutorily sanctioned from 1619 to 1865, slavery deprived more than four million Africans and their descendants of life, liberty, citizenship, cultural heritage, and economic opportunity. Following the abolition of slavery, government entities at the federal, state, and local levels continued to perpetuate, condone, and often profit from practices that brutalized African Americans and excluded them from meaningful participation in society. This legacy of slavery and racial discrimination has resulted in debilitating economic, educational, and health hardships that are uniquely experienced by African Americans.
AB 3121 charges the Reparations Task Force with studying the institution of slavery and its lingering negative effects on living African Americans, including descendants of persons enslaved in the United States and on society. Additionally, the Task Force will recommend appropriate remedies of compensation, rehabilitation, and restitution for African Americans, with a special consideration for descendants of persons enslaved in the United States. By statute, the Task Force will issue a report to the Legislature by June 1, 2022, which will be available to the public.
The Task Force will hold periodic meetings, which are open to the public. Additionally, the California Department of Justice will facilitate Task Force consultation with various experts on California history and reparations. To receive notifications regarding the Reparations Task Force, including information about upcoming meetings, please subscribe to the AB 3121 mailing list.