We’ve got a new lawyer now

protest-trailerDavid Rotenstein,
Silver Spring, MD.

Africville was a community of African Canadians on Bedford Bay in Halifax, Nova Scotia. It was settled in the early 1800s by former American slaves who went to Canada as Black Loyalists and as slaves during the American Revolution and War of 1812. After decades of neglect by the city of Halifax, Africville’s homes were razed and its residents displaced into public housing projects elsewhere in Halifax. In the 1990s the former residents and their heirs sued for reparations. After achieving a small settlement – a park was created in the former community, an apology issued, and a museum was built – Africville’s people still wanted to be made whole. My six words, told to me in 2016 by one of the former residents, captures the hope and despair of people in communities throughout the Americas whose lives and livelihoods were destroyed by environmental racism and greed.

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