Florida Democrats back federal loan forgiveness program for minority farmers – Central Florida News

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A federal judge has temporarily suspended a $ 4 billion loan forgiveness program intended to help minority farmers. Florida Democrats, including Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, are voting in favor of the program.

According to the Associated Press, a group of white Midwestern farmers claim their rights are violated because they are denied participation in the program because of their race.

Miami Democratic Representative Kevin Chambliss said the trial was an opportunity to talk about the challenges black farmers face.

“We have always had to go to court to defend fairness, but we know that it has already been established that black farmers have been at a disadvantage within the USDA department. So, I almost feel like it’s actually an opportunity to point that out more specifically. ”

Chambliss hopes the lawsuit will set a precedent that lawmakers can use when creating policies to help black farmers.

Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried spoke in favor of the program. She says it’s an attempt to right the wrongs of the past.

“Helping socially disadvantaged farmers struggling with loans, strengthening our country’s food supply, national security and economy does no harm. And morally, it was the right thing to do.

Only ethnically black, Latino, Native American, Alaskan, Asian American, or Pacific Islander farmers are eligible for the loan forgiveness program.


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