George Soros Foundation announces $ 220 million push for racial justice

Hungarian-born American investor and philanthropist George Soros delivers a speech on the sidelines of the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum (WEF) on January 23, 2020 in Davos, eastern Switzerland.

Fabrice Coffrini | AFP | fake pictures

Open Society Foundations, a philanthropic organization founded by liberal megadonor George Soros, announced Monday that it is investing $ 220 million to advance racial justice.

The bulk, $ 150 million, will be awarded in five-year grants to various civil rights and racial equality groups, such as the Black Voters Matter and Equal Justice Initiative, according to the foundation. The groups receiving these grants are addressing racial inequality in different ways, including fighting for police reform and increasing access to ballots for people of color.

The money will be released for five years because “real progress requires sustained support for many years and letting responsible leaders in the affected communities form the way forward,” the foundation said.

The remaining $ 70 million will be divided among local initiatives that support progress toward racial equality. According to the announcement, part of the money will be used to finance youth participating in internships and civic engagements, as well as “efforts to combat voter repression and disinformation.”

The reversal comes amid widespread protests for racial equality and calls for police reform that came after the death of George Floyd, a black man who was killed by Minneapolis police on Memorial Day. Floyd, 46, died after being subjected during an investigation into whether he had used a counterfeit $ 20 bill.

“It is inspiring and powerful to experience this moment of transformation in the racial justice movement,” Open Society Foundations President Patrick Gaspard said in a statement.

“We are honored to be able to carry out the vital work of fighting for rights, dignity and equity for oppressed people around the world started by our founder and president, George Soros.”

Soros, 89, has long supported marginalized groups. He has been a frequent target of anti-Semitic and right-wing groups, including in his native Hungary.