Judge suspends loan cancellation program for black farmers
A Florida federal judge cited racial discrimination in a ruling that ended the loan cancellation program for black farmers that was part of the Biden administration’s COVID-19 relief program that forgave debts related to agriculture.
U.S. District Judge Marcia Morales said in her ruling that Congress should “eliminate government-imposed discrimination based on race ”, The Washington Post reported.
Howard said: “It appears that by adopting the strict race-based debt relief remedy of Section 1005, Congress acted very quickly to address the history of discrimination, but no did not act very carefully.
The lawsuit was brought by Scott Wynn, a white farmer who objected to the loan program being race-based.
The judge said the US Department of Agriculture may pursue plans on how the loan cancellation program will be distributed while the program’s constitutionality issues are resolved.
The program was set at to start distribution of the loan remittance in early June.
“For black and minority farmers, the US bailout could represent one of the most important civil rights pieces of legislation in decades,” said A.Agriculture secretary Tom vilsackTom Vilsack USDA: Farm-to-School Programs Help Schools Serve Healthier Meals NIGHT MONEY: Home to Pass Debt Ceiling Bill MORE mentionned.
“That’s because at the bottom of the law is a provision that responds to decades of systemic discrimination perpetrated against farmers and ranchers of color by the US Department of Agriculture,” he added.
Wynn said he took legal action because his income was affected by the pandemic and most of the money he earned went to paying off federal farm loans, according to The Post. He thinks he should be able to get loan forgiveness as well.
The program has been the subject of several lawsuits across the country and was already pending another case in Wisconsin.