The city of Philadelphia agreed to pay $9.25 million to protesters who attended Black Lives Matter rallies in 2020 following George Floyd’s death.
The settlement was announced by a law firm that represented 237 protesters who claimed physical injuries and mental trauma.
The city will also pay $500,000 for counseling services and will cut its involvement in a federal program that provides surplus military equipment to local police forces.
Protesters filed four federal lawsuits against the city claiming they suffered nerve damage from overly tight zip ties and scars from rubber bullets.
They also claimed that exposure to chemical agents like pepper spray required hospital treatment and caused mental trauma.
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said in a statement that black and brown Philadelphians have been inflicted by “immeasurable pain and trauma”.
“While this is just one step in the direction toward reconciliation, we hope this settlement will provide some healing from the harm experienced by people in their neighborhoods in West Philadelphia and during demonstrations on I-676 in 2020,” Kenney said.
The protests already cost the city $21 million, according to Security Management.
Philly isn’t the first city to issue payouts to BLM protesters. New York City will also pay between $4 and $6 million due to injuries from zip ties and pepper spray.
City Continues to Struggle With Crime
George Soros, the liberal megadonor, funded current Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner.
Under his policies, the city has seen robberies with firearms up over 20% and auto theft up nearly 40%, according to Free Beacon.
Voters in the city rank crime as one of their top issues, and even Democrat candidates say they want to push back against Krasner’s catch and release policies.
“We need to bring back the certainty of punishment in the city of Philadelphia,” Democratic candidate Derek Green said.
Police union leader John McNesby said the city is over 1,000 officers short of its ideal staffing rate.