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The Black Farmers and Agriculturalists (BFAA) recently hit a snag when the U. S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit, denied the group’s complaint against the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

“It was anticipated that the quest for justice and the cash award for BFAA’s 20,000 members for past years of racial discrimination could be won,” said Bishop David A. Hall Sr., ecumenical support advisor for BFAA. “The fight is very costly, but the dues of BFAA’s members afford the Association the opportunity to continue vigorous legal action on behalf of black farmers and their heirs.”

The descendants of Earnest Lee Boyland from Mason, Tenn. filed a lawsuit in the 1990s alleging that the USDA adhered to discriminatory policies against African-American farmers between the years of 1983 and 1997 when loans and other assistance programs were systematically denied to “black farmers.”