New Legislation to Right the Wrongs of USDA Racial Discrimination
EWG and the National Black Farmers Association are pleased with the introduction of the Pigford Claims Remedy Act today. Introduced by Representatives Scott (D-VA) and Chabot (R-OH) and Senators Grassley (R-IA) and Obama (D-IL), the act will help thousands of African American farmers who were denied entry in the Pigford v. Glickman settlement. The settlement followed the filing of a class action lawsuit by minority farmers and claimed that the USDA had discriminated against African American farmers because of their race when applying for farm loans or other forms of assistance.
"We look forward to continuing our work with NBFA and working with the Congress to see that justice is finally served," said Ken Cook, president of EWG. In 2003's "Obstruction of Justice" report, EWG found that nearly nine out of ten African American farmers were denied compensation for the discrimination they experienced in accessing crop loans available to similarly situated white farmers.
EWG is a nonprofit research organization based in Washington, DC that uses the power of information to protect human health and the environment. The Group's farm subsidy database is searchable online at http://www.ewg.org/farm/.