Since Saint Paul’s founding, African Americans have faced discrimination that has included redlining, racial covenants restricting the sale of real estate, and the destruction of the Rondo residential neighborhood and business district to make way for I-94. Disparities in homeownership, economic prosperity, education and healthcare resulted.
The Saint Paul City Council has undertaken several key initiatives to address these injustices and move toward reparation. These efforts culminated in the City Council establishing the Saint Paul Recovery Act Community Reparations Commission January 4, 2023. This ordinance will take effect February 13, 2023.
The City Council anticipates it will begin taking applications to serve on the Commission the week of February 13th or shortly thereafter. The application will be posted on this website. If you would like an email alert when the application to serve is posted, please email us at StPaulReparations@StPaul.gov.
The work that led up to the establishment of the commission began officially on January 13, 2021, when City Council passed Resolution 21-77. In this, the Council apologized on behalf of the City of Saint Paul for the City's role in the institutional and structural racism experienced by its residents. In addition, the resolution calls for the creation of a limited-term Legislative Advisory Committee to create a framework in the City's Codes for a permanent commission, to be known as the Saint Paul Recovery Act Community Reparations Commission.
The City Council’s Legislative Advisory Committee was comprised of community members with the skills, lived experiences and professional backgrounds to meaningfully engage in the work of helping to establish a commission to address the lineal wealth gap in Saint Paul. This Legislative Advisory Committee delivered an outstanding draft ordinance to establish a permanent commission and companion report with pointed and useful commentary to sift through the issues.
The City Council’s research staff also partnered with the Saint Paul Public Library to develop a resource list for anyone to be able to learn more about the topic of reparations. It includes many resources specific to Saint Paul and Minnesota.
Description and Application for Commission
Applications will be accepted from Tuesday, February 14th 9AM - Friday, April 14, 2023 (EXTENDED DEADLINE)