On Friday, U.S. Senators Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin introduced the Economic Justice Act.
The Act will provide more than $435 billion in immediate and long-term investments in communities of color to address systemic racism and reverse decades of historic underinvestment.
“Our economy currently puts the interests of big corporations and the wealthiest individuals before the needs of everyday Americans,” said Senator Van Hollen. “These built-in advantages for the powerful make it harder for working people, especially in communities of color, to get ahead. We must change this, and the Economic Justice Act will make sweeping reforms to our economy so that every American gets a fair shake. I’ve been proud to work on a number of the proposals included within this legislation – from closing the digital divide, to improving social services, to reducing long-term unemployment. We must address these disparities immediately, and I look forward to working with the Biden Administration to do just that.”
“The historic, pervasive racial disparities in economic and public health outcomes have only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Senator Cardin. “I am proud to join my Democratic colleagues to introduce this historic bill to make overdue investments in communities of color. Entrepreneurship is one of the keys to closing the racial wealth gap, and this bill will empower minority entrepreneurs and innovators to start small businesses and create jobs.”
Through 11 key initiatives, the act aims to help communities of color respond to the pandemic by investing over $135 billion in underfunded critical priorities and seeks to build long lasting wealth and health in these communities over the next five years by investing over $300 billion.