NEWS > U.S.A. > NORTH CAROLINA WOMEN RECEIVE COMPENSATION FOR FORCED STERILIZATION BUT WON’T BE PASSING IT DOWN TO CHILDREN
NORTH CAROLINA WOMEN RECEIVE COMPENSATION FOR FORCED STERILIZATION BUT WON’T BE PASSING IT DOWN TO CHILDREN
January 12 2012
Raleigh, NC – For decades the issue of woman’s body has been foremost on the mind of many Americans. To be fair, women’s bodies are often on the minds of just about everyone in the world, but the issue in the United States in particular has become something else entirely.
Starting in the early part of the century the issue was contraception. By the 1970’s the issue was abortion. Today it revolves around those issues and more as society tries to determine what it is a woman can and cannot do with her own body. That is very much a major issue today in North Carolina after a task force in that state determined that hundreds of women forcibly sterilized should be compensated to the tune of $100 million.
The programme which saw the women, upwards of 7600 people between 1929 and 1974, was become a serious concern not only for North Carolina but also other states, 30 in all, who engaged in similar practices and who may now be liable for the same type of compensation for their past misdeeds. For the victims though it is a major victory, a vindication for a serious wrong done to them, and a good bit of cash in their pockets that most plan to just spend, not having anyone to pass it down to when they pass away.
“We have repeatedly acknowledged and stated as a task force that no amount of money can adequately pay for the harm done to these citizens. We are not attempting through our work to place a value on anyone's life. However, we are attempting to achieve a level of financial compensation and other services that can provide meaningful assistance to survivors,” said a spokesperson for the Task Force.
72 living victims have been verified but at least 2000 others currently have claims pending.
It’s not clear how long the process of identification will take or how many ways the victims eventually have to split the cash. The government has not officially taken on the recommendation as yet.
“I just want this to be over. This was an awful thing that they done to us and they need to make it right, as right as they can make it. We deserve at least this much money but it won’t make up for what they done to us. This ain’t going let me have babies,” said one victim who is well beyond child bearing years anyways. “They took our children from us, they took our rights as women. It just isn’t right and they need to pay for what they done and make sure it never gets done again.”
The woman we spoke to didn’t specify what she was going to do with the windfall, though she is planning on redoing her kitchen in the near future.
“This type of thing is so barbaric that it’s hard to imagine that it took place in the United States, and not all that long ago as well. Sterilizing rape victims or people who are mentally deficient, it’s just so abhorrent to a modern sensibility and really shows how little regard people had for human dignity, particularly when it came to poor and often black people,” said Scrape TV Health analyst Rebecca Phelps. “It’s really quite disgusting and there is no excusing those actions. Of course, I don’t know why taxpayers today have to pay for their pain and suffering. What happened to the victims isn’t fair, but neither is taking money from modern taxpayers. That’s especially troubling considering that none of these women created taxpayers of their own, all they are doing is taking and that really isn’t fair either.”
A number of the victims turned up for the announcement wearing brand new clothes and shoes.
Mike Michaels, American Correspondent