From an editorial in Thursday’s (Winston-Salem) Journal:
Good for the U.S. Senate for unanimously passing a bill this week that excludes sterilization compensation payments from consideration in determining federal benefits. The House should follow suit.
Sen. Thom Tillis, the North Carolina Republican, introduced this bill with Democrat Tom Carper of Delaware. Sens. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.) are original co-sponsors.
We need more such bipartisan legislation for vulnerable citizens.
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As state House speaker, Tillis finally made compensation for eugenics victims a reality. N.C. victims have received two checks each totaling $35,000, and it’s hoped a third check will bring the final total to more than $45,000 each.
Our state was the first in the nation to compensate victims of forced sterilization.
North Carolina’s program, one of the most aggressive in the country, sterilized more than 7,600 men, women and children from 1929 through 1974. The program often used flimsy evidence in deeming its victims mentally or physically unfit to reproduce.
More states should follow North Carolina and Virginia in compensation.