Deon Jenkins told the task force, which was formed by Governor Newsom in 2020, to compensate black Californians for discriminatory housing practices, that reparation payments should be in line with today's average cost of owning a home in the state, which is estimated to be around $800,000, the Daily Mail reports.
Jenkins, a self-described "hip hop organizer," said in an interview following the public hearing of the task force, that "Either they're going to comply or it's going to be a serious backlash."
According to the Daily Mail, Jenkins ran for president in 2016 and 2020, and ran for US Senate in California in 2022, all of which were unsuccessful.
"$200,000 is nothing for what my family has contributed to this country," he told the committee earlier in the day. "We built this country, we serve this country, honorably. We need reparations."
Gov. Newsom launched a $569 billion reparations plan at the end of last month, based on the task force panel's recommendation to deliver $223,200 to each black descendant of American slavery who is a resident of California.
In a speech given before the task force meetings, Jenkins said,"Defense, money, land, grants. Four elements of every society, every nation – a defensive structure, economy, land and having access to that economy."
"If that is not being addressed reparations will not hold," he added. "Reparations – repair is the root word, we cannot have repair if those elements are not addressed."
The chair of the task force, Kamilah V. Moore, gave a series of interviews the day before the public hearings began to clarify some of the misconceptions surrounding the reparations, such as that everyone who applies for the program will receive the full recommended amount.
She confirmed that only people who were impacted by housing discrimination in California between 1933 and 1977 would be eligible to apply for the maximum amount.
"In reality, that number would be minimized when you take into account the fact that the task force decided in March that the community of eligibility would be lineage-based rather than race-based," she said.
The group has until July 1, 2023, to make a decision regarding what reparations will be applied.
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