The 21st Show

How is Evanston’s reparations program making a difference?

A person walks a dog past a street sign reading

A person walks a dog past a street sign reading "Welcome to Evanston" in the predominantly Black 5th Ward in Evanston, Ill., Tuesday, May 4, 2021. The Chicago suburb is preparing to pay reparations in the form of housing grants to Black residents who experienced housing discrimination. AP Photo/Shafkat Anowar

In 2021, city leaders in Evanston voted to use marijuana tax money for a reparations program intended to make amends for past racist housing practices. Evanston became the first U.S. city to use marijuana revenues to fund reparations for Black residents. We wanted to know how it's going and if there are plans for a statewide reparations plan.


Robin Rue Simmons
Former Alderwoman, Evanston; Founder, executive director, FirstRepair

Jeff Trask 

Chair, Champaign-Urbana Reparations Coalition
Professor, College of Applied Health Sciences, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign