January 10th, 2012
11:53 AM ET

Task force recommends $50,000 payment to N.C. sterilization victims

A task force has recommended that a one-time payment of $50,000 be given to each of the living victims of North Carolina's forced sterilization program, committee spokeswoman Jill Lucas told CNN.

North Carolina's eugenics program sterilized an estimated 7,600 people between 1929 and 1974, many of them against their will.

The Eugenics Compensation Task Force will make its recommendation to Gov. Bev Purdue who will include the recommendation in the budget she submits to the state legislature which will take this up in the spring, Lucas said.

The five-member task force – including a doctor, lawyer, historian, retired judge and retired journalist – met for 10 months and faced a February 1 deadline to send a recommendations to the governor.

preliminary report released in August suggested the state provide victims with mental health services and a tax-exempt payment of $20,000 to $50,000. The report also recommended funding for the continuation and expansion of the North Carolina Justice for Sterilization Victims Foundation, which operates the task force, as well as funding for a traveling exhibition to educate the public about the state’s defunct eugenics program.

There are few public details about who – if any – were targeted for sterilization and how they were coerced into it.

Nationally, many eugenics programs focused on criminals and mentally ill people, but in North Carolina, it extended to healthy women and children who were often poor and uneducated. Mothers were pushed or tricked into signing release forms for their young daughters to undergo the sterilization operation under threat of losing state-provided aid or custody.

Their stories and circumstances have only begun to emerge recently, sometimes in emotional public hearings, sometimes in phone calls to the victims foundation.

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soundoff (127 Responses)
  1. banasy©

    They're addressing it.
    It's at least an aknowledgment of wrong-doing.
    Many people shouldn't breed; but that didn't stop most of the posters from being born, did it?

    January 10, 2012 at 5:31 pm | Report abuse |
  2. hamsta

    i never said sterilize welfare recipients.thats just wrong its not the childs fault.i have suggested taking kids away from welfare recipients.if they can take my friends kid away over an argument with the politician neighbor,then not being able to feed ur child should be grounds to have ur child placed in foster care.

    January 10, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Mmmmm

    ...a turtle-eggs lover and hypocrit who breeds.

    January 10, 2012 at 5:47 pm | Report abuse |
  4. banasy©

    ...a bitter old hypocrite who knows nothing.

    January 10, 2012 at 6:11 pm | Report abuse |
  5. banasy©

    IIiiiiiiiiiiiiits Pat!

    January 10, 2012 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse |
  6. banasy©

    I didlike turtle eggs.
    Another thing I have posted that you"ve ignored.
    I'm getting used to it with you.

    January 10, 2012 at 6:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      Ooops, I meant 'dislike' and 'you've'.

      January 10, 2012 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mmmmm

      I gonna keep pickin' on you untill you realize sometimes it is good to have a golden heart.

      January 10, 2012 at 7:20 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Saoirse

    It's good that they want to compensate these victims, though I don't think anything can make up for what was taken away from them.

    January 10, 2012 at 6:32 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Scottish Mama

    But people get more money for burns at MCDonalds. It seems like a small amount for reproductive organs. I think it is too small and there are so many, 60,000 or more in the US.

    January 10, 2012 at 6:43 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Ashamed

    For anyone who suggests that racism is dead.....read the above comments. I beleive many of you operate under the assumption that accepting welfare is a lifelong choice for those in that condition. Look at how many unemployed Americans there are right now. Many of whom would prefer to be employed. I was in law school and lost my job. I accepted food stamps for short period of time to feed my children. Should i have been sterilized? POVERTY IS NOT ALWAYS PERMANENT! Ignorance unfortunately sometimes is!

    January 10, 2012 at 7:04 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Scottish Mama

    @Ashamed – They hide behind their pointed hoods, because of hate. They breed hate in their children. Should they be sterilized?

    January 10, 2012 at 7:09 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Scottish Mama

    About the $50,000., it is 60,000 sterilized people in all 50 states since 1907, I think they may have 9,000 maybe alive in NC, so the amount is a drop in the bucket.

    January 10, 2012 at 7:13 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Mmmmm

    a lotta of y'all are talkin' eugenics here, the ragin' lunatic rantings and moral evil of margaret sanger and neo-nazi communists. ...both who really upheld breeding for their causes. but in all fairness you hypocrites whose permission or approval did you seek before you open yalegs to make a baby?

    January 10, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Scottish Mama

      @Mmmmm – most here do not even know who Margaret Sanger is. Birth control for the poor or birth nazi ?

      January 10, 2012 at 9:08 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Jeremy

    Hmmm... I don't remember this from the history books. 30 years old and I just found out that this happened in our own country... how sick. Apparently from what I've researched, it was actually the USA's eugenics and gas chamber programs that inspired 'ol Adolf Hitler himself... it wasn't his idea. Whoda thunk.

    January 10, 2012 at 8:32 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Scottish Mama

    @Jeremy I guess you have never heard of the government giving the black population STD's?

    January 10, 2012 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |
  15. s kel

    I really mean this ,

    January 11, 2012 at 12:13 am | Report abuse |
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