BLACK Americans should be given land that was "stolen" from their ancestors through racist practices, a California official said on Friday.
LA County Supervisor Janice Hahn made the comments after the city moved to return a beachfront property, worth around 72million, to the relatives of a black family it was seized from nearly a century ago.
Hahn urged other cities across the country to follow LA's lead and right old wrongs during a chat with TMZ Live.
She led the effort to return land known as Bruce's Beach, in Manhattan Beach, to the descendants of Willa and Charles Bruce.
The black couple owned and operated a beach resort on the land in the 1920s, until it was seized by the city using eminent domain.
The land was reportedly supposed to be turned in a park by the city, but a park wasn't built until decades later in the 1960s.
Hahn said that the "whole country" should move to make amends for racially-motivated policies of the past that discriminated against black Americans.
"I think this is the first time in our nation that a government has given land to an African-American family to make amends for past discrimination and atrocities and policies that were enacted, that really limited African-Americans' ability to own businesses, to own property, to even buy homes in certain neighborhoods," Hahn said.
"This is a very small step towards what I think this whole country should be doing – and that is working to repair and to make amends with the African-Americans in this country."
Hahn said that she stumbled upon the story of the Bruce family and how the county had seized their land about a year ago.
The Bruces purchased the land in 1912 and built the first West Coast resort for black people, at a time when segregation often barred them from beaches.
"I knew it my heart there was only one thing to do, and that was to figure out how to give the land back," she said.
Anthony Bruce, one of the family's last living direct descendants, says that the county's decision to seize the land almost a century ago robbed the Bruces of generational wealth.
"It was wrong against the Bruce family," he told ABC.
"I think we would be wealthy Americans still living there in California … Manhattan Beach probably."
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