Source: PRESS RELEASE, 10/28/11
United States Senator Kay R. Hagan (NC) today praised the U.S. District Court’s approval of the settlement between the Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the African American Farmers who filed the PigfordII lawsuit.
“Justice has at last prevailed for the African American farmers who were discriminated against and denied compensation for decades,” said Hagan. “Since coming to the Senate, I have worked to right this wrong for 4,000 African American farmers in North Carolina and 75,000 nationwide. With this ruling, our farmers are finally receiving the justice and relief they deserve."
U.S. District Court’s approval of the Pigford II settlement is an acknowledgement of the injustice and discrimination the African American farmers suffered when they were applying for loans and other USDA programs.
Since coming to the Senate, Hagan has worked closely with Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) to ensure 4,000 African-American farmers in North Carolina and 75,000 nationwide can receive settlements following decades of discrimination by the Department of Agriculture.
In December of 2010 the President signed the House and Senate passed Claims Resolution Act to fund the $1.15 billion settlement, a bill that Hagan introduced with Senate Agriculture Chairman Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) and Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) in February of that year. Hagan fought for the legislation all along the way. She led rallies and marches on Capitol Hill. And she hosted a roundtable discussion on the Pigford settlement with John Boyd, President of the National Black Farmers Association, and African-American farmers in North Carolina.