City councils in Richmond and Oakland could put California in the forefront of a growing national movement to force companies to disclose whether they profited from slavery.
Richmond’s City Council adopted an ordinance on March 1 requiring that its pension and investment funds divest themselves from financial institutions linked to slavery. Oakland City Councilman Larry Reid is crafting a similar measure, which he plans to introduce April 12…
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…When Chicago enacted its own law in 2002, JPMorgan Chase found that two banks it once owned accepted 13,000 slaves as collateral for loans made to Louisiana landowners in the 1800s. When some loans defaulted, the banks took possession of more than 1,200 slaves. In January, the bank apologized and established a $5 million scholarship fund for African Americans in Louisiana.
Some activists are hopeful these laws may one day help secure reparations for African Americans.