Restorative Actions: Surrendering wealth for mutual well being

Restorative action is a racial equity initiative born from the intersection of theology, justice, and economics.  It allows U.S. Americans who benefit from institutional racism, to provide credible witness for justice by surrendering ill-gotten gains toward the establishment of just relationships with our Afro-American & Indigenous communities.

America's Racial Wealth Gap

What wealth is ill-gotten?

Average Household Net Worth Over Time

(in 2020 Dollars)

Graph: Showing growing wealth gap between white, Black and Indigenous households over time.

Over the last half of a century, the average wealth held by individual white households has grown exponentially, while the average wealth of Black and Indigenous households have experienced much more modest growth followed by modest decline in the last 15 years.

Current Average Household Net Worth, as of 2019

(in 2020 Dollars)

Wide and growing disparity persists across racial populations. As of 2019, on average, white households hold $845,830 and $916,489 more than Black & Indigenous households respectively.

Graph: Showing wealth gap between white, Black and Indigenous households.

Average Household Net Worth Above or Below Parity, as of 2019

(in 2020 Dollars)

Graph: Showing wealth gap between white, Black and Indigenous households.

If parity (equal distribution) existed, Black, white, and Indigenous households would each have, on average, $830,001 of accumulated wealth in 2019. White households hold, on average, $162,609 more than parity and Black & Indigenous households hold, on average, $699,658 & $753,879 less. Today, 16% of average white household wealth exceeds parity levels.

Aggregated White Household Wealth Exceeding Parity (trillions)

Across the nearly 85 million white households in America, the aggregated wealth accumulated above parity has grown to just under $14 trillion. This racial wealth gap has over tripled in the last 30 years and is expected to grown exponentially in the future.

Graph: Showing aggregated wealth gap over time adding up to almost $14 trillion.

Economic Justice Is Racial Justice

Surrendering their proportionate share of the wealth gap, 16% of individual wealth that is held, contributes to economic justice. Restorative action is a racial equity initiative that allows U.S. Americans who benefit from institutional racism, to provide credible witness for justice by surrendering ill-gotten gains (wealth above parity) toward the establishment of just relationships with Afro-American & Indigenous communities.

Graph: Showing how the wealth gap could be closed if ill-gotten wealth was redistributed to Black and Indigenous households.

Definitions

average – or mean, which is calculated by dividing the sum of values by the number of values

median – a value lying at the midpoint of a frequency of values

parity – the state or condition of being equal

There is a similar relationship and relative gap in household wealth whether it is calculated in average or median.

 

Sources

HH-2 Census reports – https://www.census.gov/data/tables/time-series/demo/families/households.html

World Population Review – https://worldpopulationreview.com/state-rankings/native-american-population

Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF) – https://www.federalreserve.gov/econres/scf/dataviz/scf/table/

National Indian Council on Aging – https://www.nicoa.org/

Mariko Chang Pyle, Lifting as We Climb: Women of Color, Wealth, and America’s Future; Insight Center for Community Economic Development, Spring 2010

Urban Institute – https://www.urban.org/urban-wire/racial-wealth-gap-was-wide-1963-and-it-remains-large-today

Official Data – https://www.officialdata.org/us/stocks/s-p-500/1960

What are the trusts and who will direct them?

There are two trusts, one directed by and for the benefit of Indigenous people and the other directed by and for the benefit of Afro-Americans.
Each trust will be comprised of and led by individuals that are representative of the communities the trusts are intended to benefit.
These trustees will make ALL decisions about distributions.

Restorative Fund for Indigenous Individuals & Communities 

Whose stated purpose is to increase opportunities to flourish for Indigenous individuals and communities.  

Restorative Fund for Afro-American Individuals & Communities

Whose stated purpose is to resume the work left undone at Emancipation to increase opportunities to flourish for the heirs of the Afro-Americans whose ability to accumulate generational wealth was severely restricted through the denial of equal protection under the law.

to participate

Individuals, congregations, mid-councils, and others can witness against injustice by surrendering wealth or income proportionate with the advantages that privileges have afforded to two private charitable trusts.

COMMITMENT TO DATE

Over $800,000 has been surrendered as of March 1, 2021.