Press Releases

Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) applauded the Senate passage of his legislation to establish the Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys. The Commission would be housed within the United States Commission on Civil Rights’ Office and would recommend policies to improve current government programs. U.S. Representative Frederica Wilson (D-FL) introduced companion legislation (H.R. 1636) in the House. The bill now heads to the House of Representatives for consideration.
 
“There is nothing more un-American than racial discrimination and racial inequality, and we must address it,” Rubio said. “ All of us are hurt by a country where a significant percentage of Americans feel that their lives do not matter and their issues are not dealt with due to the color of their skin. A lack of economic opportunity and prosperity, particularly for young black men, is a tragedy for our nation. America needs their talents to solve the 21st century’s challenges. I am proud that the Senate took action to pass this important, bipartisan and bicameral legislation that I introduced to establish the Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys. I look forward to seeing the Commission produce meaningful recommendations to address the many issues affecting our communities and families.”
 
Specifically, the Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys Act establishes a commission to recommend policies to improve upon, or augment, current government programs. The bipartisan Commission will include Members of Congress, federal agency experts, and appointed subject issue area experts. The Commission will investigate potential civil rights violations affecting black males and study the disparities they experience in education, criminal justice, health, employment, fatherhood, mentorship and violence. The Commission will be responsible for producing an annual report to address the current conditions affecting black men and boys and make recommendations to improve the social conditions and provide vital guidance for Congress on effective strategies to reduce the racial disparities in education, criminal justice, health and employment. The report will be submitted to the President, Congress, members of the President’s Cabinet, and the chairs of the appropriate committees of jurisdiction, and be publicly available online on a centralized Federal website. The bill does not authorize any appropriations, and members of the Commission serve without compensation.
 
The bill is in line with the 2006 established Florida Council on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys, which Rubio worked on while in the state legislature, including appointing members as Speaker of the Florida House.