June 29, 2022

Compensation for victims of North Carolina eugenics program abandoned

North Carolina’s effort to compensate victims of a widespread and decades-long eugenics program that extended into the 1970s was derailed in the State Senate this week.

North Carolina’s effort to compensate victims of a widespread and decades-long eugenics program that extended into the 1970s was derailed in the State Senate this week. Governor Bev Perdue and the State House of Representatives had backed a compensation package that would have given victims as much as US$50,000 each but the Senate ignored it.

The omission has angered victims and supporters who had hoped North Carolina would be the first of the 32 states that practised eugenics to pay victims. “I am just overwhelmed that their mentality is still the same as the politicians who supported eugenics in the first place,” said Elaine Riddick, who was sterilized at 14 after having a baby fathered by a neighbor. “You have done messed up people for life, and this is what you do?” NC state governor Bev Perdue has 10 days to decide whether to veto the bill. It is set to come into effect on July 1. ~ New York Times, Jun 20; Reuters, Jun 21

Jared Yee
Creative commons
eugenics