Palm Springs’ Displacement of Black and Brown Neighborhood Spurs Call for Justice

In the 1950s and 1960s, the City of Palm Springs orchestrated the demolition of a predominantly Black and Brown neighborhood, displacing over 1,000 residents. This historic injustice, involving the razing of homes in the Section 14 area, has come under renewed scrutiny as survivors and their supporters demand long overdue compensation.

The Section 14 Survivors have been working tirelessly to raise awareness about this little-known chapter of Palm Springs’ history. They are calling for recognition and reparations for the destruction of their homes and personal property. Their efforts have highlighted the emotional and financial toll the displacement had on the affected families.

Areva Martin, a Los Angeles civil rights attorney who represents the Survivors of Section 14, said to The New York Times, “These people who were upended, who watched their parents suffer, lose jobs, lose their home, people who suffered psychological trauma… We want Section 14 to be restored to this community’s memory.”


After months of intense negotiations in April, Palm Springs offered a settlement of approximately $4.3 million for up to 145 properties. However, this offer is only a fraction of the survivors’ proposed. Ms. Martin, a representative for the survivors, criticized the city’s proposal, stating it “relies on flawed data and improper analyses.” Survivors believe a more accurate assessment of their damages ranges from $187 to $366 million.

As negotiations continue, the survivors remain steadfast in their pursuit of a settlement that truly reflects the magnitude of their losses and the profound impact of their displacement.