We envision a world that is accountable for past harms including slavery, colonialism, genocide, and other material and moral abuses. These past harms create the present conditions in which we live and impact our future. We seek to create a world where reconciliation is possible because racism is no more.
We uplift faith-based and ethically-centered frameworks that demand accountability for the history and current world conditions that slavery, colonialism, genocide, and other material and moral abuses created. We have set out to create a culture of reparations that emerges from spiritual practice, transformative education, and action.
A program of The Truth Telling Project, the Grassroots Reparations Campaign launched in 2019. This important year marked
Acknowledging our history, we are committed to building a new reality for current and future generations by inviting a broad coalition of faith-based institutions, faith communities, and ethically-centered organizations to be part of an awakening to our participation and/or complicity in upholding systems of white supremacy. With other Black- and People of Color-led organizations, we invite ethically-centered organizations and congregations from various religious traditions to atone for and heal from participation in white supremacist culture, practices, and policies.
Working from the outset with those who have been doing reparations work for decades before us, we are partnered with the following faith-based and ethically-oriented social justice organizations: the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America (N'COBRA), Fellowship of Reconciliation Atlanta, Community of Living Traditions, Psychoanalysis for Social Responsibility, Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth, Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity, Center for Jubilee, Reconciliation and Healing, Racial Justice Rising, Coming to the Table, and Coming to the Table VA.
Success looks like the creation of a culture of accountability and repair. In this culture, faith-based and ethically-centered communities have committed, en masse, to holding themselves accountable for participation and/or complicity in sustaining systems of white supremacy. One demonstration of this commitment is the adoption of Reparations Sabbath or Reparations Sunday into their spiritual practice. The Grassroots Reparations Campaign has set out to mobilize America’s faith and social justice-driven movements to acknowledge our history, demand reparations for Blacks and Persons of Color in America, and build a new reality for present and future generations.
In 2017, The Truth Telling Project, Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth and Fellowship of Reconciliation began thinking about reparations as a way to accomplish racial healing and justice. This effort was led by Senior Bayard Rustin Fellow, Dr. David Ragland, International Fellowship of Reconciliation (IFOR) International Coordinator Reverend Lucas Johnson, and Chrissi Jackson, Co-founder and former Co-Director of the Truth Telling Project. Together they created the “FOR National Grassroots Truth and Reparations Campaign," a program that, with the Truth Telling Project, emphasized the need to speak and hear the truth about the original sins of genocide, slavery, and post-slavery forms of systemic racism. The Grassroots Reparations Campaign, which is who we are today, incepted in 2019. Arguing that reparations is the midpoint between truth and reconciliation, we engage in interfaith consciousness raising about the need for reparations and have built a coalition of leaders from congregations, faith-based organizations, and ethically-centered organizations. Our ultimate goal, in addition to encouraging critical reflection, is for white-dominated organizations to form reparative relationships with Black-led grassroots organizations that will define what reparations looks like for them.