EVANSTON, Ill. (CBS) — City leaders in Evanston have begun setting up a reparations fund for African-Americans.

“It has become increasingly evident that we must all rise to the challenges of anti-Black racism, and injustices against Black people in our own local communities,” said the Rev. Dr. Michael Nabors, President of the NAACP North Shore, as he read from a proclamation calling for reparations and social justice.

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Nabors was joined by Evanston Ald. Robin Rue Simmons (5th), Dr. Nichole Pinkard of Northwestern University, Dr. Gilo Kweisi Logan of the Logan Consulting Firm, and a dozen organizations to announce support for the proclamation at a news conference in Fountain Square.

They cited what they called injustices suffered by African-Americans in economics, housing, health care, education, and law enforcement.

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In November 2019, the Evanston City Council approved a measure to direct the first $10 million in tax revenue from recreational marijuana sales to a reparations fund after recreational marijuana was legalized in Illinois effective Jan.1 of this year. The goal is to address the north suburban city’s decline in African-American residents and help African-Americans thrive in Evanston, among other issues.

The hope is that by allocating $10 million of marijuana tax revenue into the reparations fund, it will encourage minority business startups and help longtime residents like Walker – ultimately eliminating the wage disparity.

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