Black farmers will get $5 billion from stimulus relief package

Posted at 10:39 AM, Apr 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-26 11:39:05-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — We are going in depth and digging into President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan and how part of this massive relief plan benefits disadvantaged farmers.

The plan benefits Black farmers in a way that some experts say hasn't happened with any legislation since the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

So, $5 billion of the $1.9 trillion package will be going to farmers. Advocates say this is step towards righting a wrong after a long period of mistreatment of Black farmers from the government and others. Some say it's a form of reparations.

For perspective, here in Tennessee, there were more than 1,400 black farmers, according to a 2017 USDA Survey of Black Farming Producers. This money would provide debt relief and other assistance to help get land, plus grants, training and education.

"There is probably a kid right now living in the intercity that wants to farm but he doesn’t have the resources to farm," farmer Michael Coleman said. "We are here, we just aren’t recognized. I really want to make a career out of this because this is something I love to do."

The average farm operated by a Black farmer has about 100 acres, with the national average coming in at more than four times that, according to the last farm census.

Scripps National Political Editor and Correspondent Joe St. George contributed to this report.