A Los Angeles County Officials taking steps to return seaside property to the descendants of a black couple who originally owned the resort urged “nationwide” to follow their example.
Janice Hahn, LA County Supervisor, Leading Property Return Efforts I told TMZ in an interview Last year she “awakened” to “atrocities” against African Americans “with the rest of the country.”
A black couple who built a resort for African Americans in a prime location along the coastline of Manhattan Beach was deprived of land by local city officials a century ago.
“I knew there was only one thing to do in my mind, it was to find a way to return the property,” Hahn said.
A five-member supervisory board previously unanimously voted to have the county CEO’s office report plans on how to return land within 60 days.
Ms. Hahn is now calling on the rest of the country to imitate this, returning the land to blacks and indigenous peoples and “apologies” for the past.
“I think this is the first time in our country that our government has returned land to an African-American family to compensate for past discrimination, atrocities and policies,” she said. I did.
Mr. Hahn added: “This is a very small first step to what I think the whole country should do and is really working to repair and atone for the African Americans in this country.”
“We, the collective community, should really apologize not only to African Americans, but also to indigenous Americans, for literally stealing land for the public good,” the supervisor said.
The land, which became known as Bruce Beach, was purchased by Willa and Charles Bruce in 1912. Willa and Charles Bruce built the first West Coast resort for blacks at a time when many beaches were isolated.
The couple were racistly harassed by their white neighbors, and in the 1920s the Manhattan Beach City Council seized land through land expropriation under the tactic of needing land for the park.
The city did nothing to its assets and was eventually transferred to the state in 1948. In 1995, the state transferred it to the county, which built an observer training headquarters on the premises.
The transfer came with further transfer restrictions that could only be lifted by state law. A bill to lift the bill was introduced in the state legislature last week.
Additional reporting via Associated Press