Dozens of African-American faith leaders, attorneys and activists pleaded with Charleston City Council to vote “yes” on a two-page resolution that would apologize for the city’s role in slavery.
While the majority of council voted for the document, “no” votes came from Councilmen Keith Waring, Harry Griffin, Kevin Shealy, Bill Moody and Marvin Wagner. Councilman Gary White was absent.
Councilman William Dudley Gregorie, a father of the document and one of four African-Americans on council, implored his colleagues to vote for the apology.
The resolution does have tangible goals. It calls for the creation of an office of racial reconciliation, which would help uncover racial disparities in the community and serve people who feel they’re being discriminated against.
Other goals in the doctrine include:
- Memorializing unmarked graves of African-Americans and enslaved Africans.
- Better public education.
- Policies that encourage businesses to strive for racial equality in health care, housing and wages.