City Councilmember Goldie Wells has asked that Greensboro look into offering reparations like the City of Asheville has done.
At the end of the City Council meeting on Tuesday, June 21, Wells said that she was interested in finding out what Asheville had done and having Greensboro do something similar.
Wells said, “I’ve been talking about the things that go along with Juneteenth and concerns for African Americans. I saw in the paper that Asheville had some reparations and I want to know what kinds of things we can do. It was suggested by someone to me that we do our apology that we are working on and that we consider some kind of thing for some of the children of those folks that were involved in that massacre that we do some reparations for them, maybe something like scholarships or something.”
She added, “Maybe we could talk about how we could add something, I guess maybe we could talk about it at a work session or something. Some way we could do some reparations and look at what Asheville did.”
Asheville called the action it took reparations, but it did not involve any direct payments, which is what is usually thought of as reparations.
What the Asheville City Council passed unanimously was to provide funding for homeownership and business and career opportunities for black residents.
It was described as part of a reparations initiative and the goal was to provide assistance in creating generational wealth for black people in Asheville that have been harmed by income, educational and healthcare disparities.
Greensboro has a first time home ownership program, which provides forgivable loans of up to $15,000 to help first time home buyers who meet the income standards afford to purchase homes. The program, however, is based on income level and not on the race of the recipient.