cover image: Justice Delayed: An Analysis of Local Proposals for Black Reparations


Justice Delayed: An Analysis of Local Proposals for Black Reparations

1 Jun 2024

In this article, I document and analyze all municipal, state, and county-level efforts for Black reparations in the United States. Most efforts resemble H.R. 40’s exploratory commission model, possibly due to policy path dependency. Few geographies have allocated funding for committee recommendations, but some have allocated funds for committee activities. Only Evanston, Illinois, has allocated and distributed funds to qualifying residents. On average, cities with reparations efforts demonstrated mixed performance on metrics related to Black wealth, with insufficient evidence to suggest local Black-White disparities are more severe than the nation as a whole. Several proposals emphasize the Black-White racial wealth gap as emblematic of slavery-derived disparity, but no municipal or state proposal can rival the scale or potential of a federal program.
path dependency slavery reparations local reparations


Olivia J. Reneau

2377-8253 2377-8261
Published in
United States of America
© 2024 Russell Sage Foundation. Reneau, Olivia J. 2024. “Justice Delayed: An Analysis of Local Proposals for Black Reparations.” RSF: The Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences 10(3): 140–61. The author would like to acknowledge her thesis advisor, William “Sandy” Darity Jr., for his continued feedback and the Hart Leadership Program for its institutional support. Direct correspondence to: Olivia Reneau, at