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Reparations: Virginia bill would require scholarships for descendants of enslaved laborers

From Brielle Entzminger | C-Ville Weekly

In an ongoing effort to atone for its racist history, the University of Virginia could provide scholarships to descendants of enslaved laborers as soon as 2022. PC: Eze Amos

For nearly a year, Isabella Gibbons has peered over Charlottesville. Inscribed into the rough-hewn granite of the University of Virginia’s Memorial to Enslaved Laborers, her eyes not only draw attention to the cruel realities of slavery—but ask what we are going to do to rectify them.

As UVA continues to atone for its racist history, a form of reparation may finally be on the way for the living descendants of enslaved laborers like Gibbons, who helped build and maintain the university for decades.

On February 5, the Virginia House of Delegates passed a bill that would require five state colleges established before 1865—the University of Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia Military Institute, Longwood University, and the College of William & Mary—to offer full four-year scholarships to descendants of enslaved laborers, allowing them to attend the school of their choice...

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