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agencies of the government, principally the Department of Health, Education and Welfare. At the present time HEW can, by employing the sanction of cutting off federal funds, compel desegregation of schools, hospitals and similar institutions. Private parties may also bring suits.
It has been our experience that private parties have done the pioneering into such questions as the duty of school boards not to discriminate racially in the hiring, firing and assignment of teachers. It is questionable whether HEW would have moved into the area of teacher segregation without the lawsuits that private parties won, holding that a student's right to a desegregated education included the right to attend schools staffed by teachers who had not been placed on a racial basis. Following these cases, HEW strengthened its position on the issue. This example can be multiplied many times over. Indeed, many provisions of the HEW guidelines on school desegregation were modified after judicial decisions in privately financed lawsuits. Moreover, it is important that the Negro communities maintain confidence in the legal system as something that they and their lawyers can invoke, even if a government agency will not. A recent article in the Wall Street Journal quoted an EFOC official as saying:
"There is a feeling on the staff level that if a complaint involves General Motors, U.S. Steel or a company of that stature, with access to the White House, then Justice will back off.”
We need not accept this as true to recognize that when a complaint is filed against a powerful corporation or labor union and the Commission does not bring it to successful fruition, the suspicion is that there is something of the sort sanctioned by the law. The Wall Street Journal article had caused much concern among plaintiffs who have been victims of a long racial discrimination. Their rights to state their case and bring it before federal courts with their lawyers are the basis of assurance against cynicism developing in the Negro community concerning enforcement of the law.
The provision in the proposed Bill, setting forth the conditions under which a private party may institute a civil action, is a decided improvement over the provisions in the present law. In many of the cases presently pending in various courts, defendants have atempted to have the cases dismissed on the ground that suit was not filed within the stated time limitation. Under the present law, a private party must institute his action within 30 days of receipt of a letter from the Commission so advising him of his right-to bring suit. It has been our experience that this 30-day limitation is much too short for the average person who would be seeking relief under the Act to seek assistance in bringing his suit and also allow the attorney sufficient time to adequately prepare for the filing of a lawsuit.
Under the proposed Bill, a private person would have 60 instead of 30 days in which to bring his action. We feel that the 60-day limitation is still much too short. We would suggest a period of one year from the day the right to go into court arises as being a more appropriate time limitation in which a private party can bring suit.
Sections 708(b) and (c) of the proposed Bill would be helpful. If might be that the proposed sections are declaratory of existing law but they should remove any ground for arguments we have directly encountered in many of the cases, to the effect that Title VII proceedings should be held up because of proceedings before the Labor Board or vice versa. Taken literally, however, the proposed amendment does not dispose of arguments that an aggrieved party should first exhaust his contractual grievances or administrative remedies before the Labor Board or the Railway Board before bringing suit in court. Since the proposed subsection (b) applies only to the case where NRLB proceedings had already been instituted, it would be better if the clause were drafted more broadly.
The proposed Section 709(d) offers a marked improvement over existing law, in that it does not exempt from EEOC record-keeping requirements employers subject to state anti-discrimination laws. The proposed Section 709(a) would afford recognition to the needs of state agencies without ham-stringing the Federal Commission.
There is one matter which is unclear under the present Title VII and is not clarified by the proposed Bill. That is, what is the status of a conciliation agreement arrived at through voluntary persuasion as provided under the present law and the proposed Bill? If the respondent violates the agreement, does the complainant sue in court for breach of agreement? Does he file against the respondent with the Commission ? Does the Commission conciliate breaches of the agreement,
or does the Omnissin D I seas in a rede
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It seems asomatos De Serum D3 2Epama sa be exempt from the coverage lende TI 50S FU to se DETT ridare the Fourteenth Amezoner. SITE FI Descaras under the Commene C. It he le SET I Dare erists a right of action against I: ÖLEDE I Tarmota agades and. (b) that there is rare bring e Call Tate and local poblie orals beim 17 ocazia sore. As to the later arg. ment, howerer, there are persons is as soode for eraunie a state-owned rajinad 35 the hisopion the Intergate Com merce Commission: sales to a crate gather to see ice carol: a di or state-operatei rašo sadoo bez za torte Frosa Carmunications Commission. etc.
The Commission should be con pocase direction 2Tbority to conduct a continuing
survey of arogasd meraising programs which could bring substantial relief in this rardagit cocal area. Seccion pelei of the proposed Bill does direct the consisset to regaire recond bearing in this area, but We feel that this approah agaiceship and retrainirg programs is insufficient. Under the present law, an szeretai pary able to afford his own attorner could apply to the court for the agonisteat of an arcorder and the court has the power to authorize the cordestenent of an action without the payment of fees, costs or security. We would suggest that the prorision relating to appointment of counsel for indigent persons be made a part of the proposed Bill.
In conclusion, I am thankful for the Committee extending me the opportunity to appear and present to Fon ODT enteriences with the present law in addition to setting forth our observations and suggestions on the proposed Bill. It is our sincere hope that the deliterations of the Committee and the Senate will be fruitful in dealing with many of the deficiencies of the present law.
PESDIXG IN FEDERAL COUBT
ALABAMA 1. Dent v. St. Louis-San Francisco Railway Co., and Brotherhood of Railag
Carmen of America, Civ. No. 66-65 (X.D, Ala.) 2. Pord, et al. v. United States Steel Corporation and United Sterlucorders of
America, Civ. No. 66-625 (N.D. Ala.)
3. Hardy, et al. v. United States Steel and United Steelworkers of America,
et al., Civ. No. 66-423 (N.D. Ala.) 4. McKinstry & Hubbard v. The United States Steel Corporation and United
Steelworkers of America, et al., Civ. No. 66–343 (N.D. Ala.) 5. Muldrow, et al. v. H. K. Porter and United Steelworkers of America, et al.,
Civ. No. 66–206 (N.D. Ala.) 6. Pearson, et al. v. Alabama By-Products Corporation and the United Mine
workers of America, Civ. No. 66–320 (N.D. Ala.) 7. Pettway, et al. v. American Cast Iron Pipe Company, Civ. No. 66–315 (N.D. Ala.)
GEORGIA 8. Anthony v. Marion Williamson and Edward J. Shable (Georgia State Em
ployment Service), Civ. No. 9947 (N.D. Ga.) 9. Banks v. Georgia Lodge No. 45, Brotherhood of Railway Carmen of America,
Civ. No. 10167 U.S.D.C. (N.D. Ga.) 10. Local Union No. 234 of the Wood, Wire and Metal Lathers Int'l. Union and
Jackson V. Acousti Engineering Company, Civ. No. 10306 (N.D. Ga.) 11. Rowe v. General Motors Corporation, Civ. No. 10391 (N.D. Ga.)
12. Clark, et al. v. American Marine Corporation, Civ. No. 16315 (E.D. La.)
13. Black, et al. v. Central Motor Lines, Inc., Civ. No. 2152 (W.D. N.C.)
N.C.) 18. Johnson and Hickman v. The First National Bank and Trust Company, Civ.
No. 668 (E.D. N.C.) 19. Lea, et al. v. Cone Mills Corporation, Civ. No, C-176-D-66 (M.D. N.C.) 20. Lee, et al. v. The Observer Transportation Corporation, Civ. No. 2145 (W.D.
N.C.) 21. Moody, et al. v. Albemarle Paper Company and United Papermakers and
Paper Workers, et al., Civ. No. 989 (E.D. N.C.) 22. Robinson, et al. v. P. Lorillard Company and Tobacco Workers International
Union, et al., Civ. No. C–141-G-66 (M.D. N.C.) 23. Walker, et al. v. Pilot Freight Carriers, Inc., Civ. No. 2167 (W.D. N.C.)
24. Alexander v. Avco Corporation and Aero Lodge No. 735 of the International
Association of Machinist and Aerospace Workers, Civ. No. 4335 (M.D.
Tenn.) 25. Hall v. Werthan Bag Corporation, Civ. No. 4312 (M.D. Tenn.)
26. Jenkins v. United Gas Corporation, Civ. No. 5152 (E.D. Texas)
27. Cariles, et al. v. Sturgis-Newport Business Forms, Civ. No. 1153 (U.S.D.C.
E.D. Va.) 28. Quarles and Briggs v. Philip Morris Tobacco Company, and Tobacco Workers
International Union, et al., Civ. No. 4544 (E.D. Va.)
PREPARED STATEMENT OF ROY WILKINS, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NATIONAL ASSOCIA
TION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF COLORED PEOPLE Mr. Chairman and members of the Subcommittee, I thank you for the invitation to participate in this panel discussion on S. 1308, the proposed Equal Employment Opportunities Enforcement Act.
S. 1308 is a part of the President's civil rights legislative program for 1967.
We are pleased to again commend President Johnson for this proposal. With
A tremendous surge of hope accompanied the passage and signing of the Civil
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and its offi-
While there have been achievements in some instances as a result of charges
The agency scored a notable success in negotiating a companywide conciliation
The occupational structure of the Negro labor force is seriously out of line
This imbalance contributes to job insecurity and prevents development of potential. The Negro occupational structure is something that came into being primarily because of restrictions which themselves were discriminatory in origin. It is shot through with systematic exclusion of Negroes with respect to training and employment opportunities. The structure does not lend itself to adjustments to technological change, and it means that the discriminated-against worker is particularly vulnerable to cyclical fluctuations and susceptible to unemployment problems. Some economists hold that approximately 35,000 jobs per week disappear as a result of automation, and while some occupations are decreased, others increase. The decrease, of course, is in the jobs of those who can least afford to lose them, for they are the low-paying, traditional, “Negro" jobs which fall before the march of progress.
Pathology with explosive potentials can be observed in the situation of the Negro teen-ager. Unemployment among this group is from 2 to 3 times that of comparable white groups. One out of every three Negro female teen-agers in the labor market today is looking for a job and cannot find one. The same is true for one out of every four Negro males. The figures for the explosive summer months of 1966 were 32 Negro teen-ager unemployed per 100 as against 14 per 100 for white teen-agers.
Special problems exist with respect to apprenticeship training and the construction industry. No agreements have been achieved by EEOC where charges have been filed, because the construction industry respondents have refused to conciliate. This area is particularly important as reliable predictions indicate there will be growth during the next few years in this industry and that skilled jobs will greatly increase therein.
Furthermore, it is a sad but true fact that some of America's giant corporations have refused to accept conciliation proposals which would eliminate overall patterns of racial discrimination in major sections of the American economy.
Those who experienced the great upsurge in hope that equal opportunity would become more the rule than the exception, and those (especially the young people) whose aspirations became greater as a result of hope, have been rudely jolted when, during the course of their transactions with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, they have learned that the agency cannot require compliance with an agreement. Indeed, it cannot order a respondent found to be in violation of Title VII to terminate unlawful policies and practices.
The proposed legislation represents substantial improvement over the present Act. We do believe there is a need for clarification and modification of some provisions—involving some changes which I will suggest.
The first improvement in the bill we would suggest would be a more extended coverage. We ask that employers of eight or more employees and unions of eight or more members be brought within the jurisdiction of the Act. According to testimony offered before the House Committee on Education and Labor by the former chairman of EEOC in 1965, this would bring approximately 500,000 additional employers within coverage of the Act.
I would like to point out that this extended coverage was a feature of the Hawkins bill (H.R. 10065) that passed the House of Representatives in the 89th Congress with the combined backing of the Democratic and Republican House leadership.
It has been our experience that employers with fewer employees often tend to be major practitioners of discrimination. Further, these employers are often located within the inner city where Negroes, Mexican Americans, and Puerto Ricans are largely confined because of discrimination in housing patterns. The employer with 8–25 employees is less likely to join the growing trek of industry to the suburbs. Their close proximity to the ghetto community may often fan tension and create disturbances if such employers are permitted to discriminate against citizens because of their race, color, religion or national origin.
We believe that another large group of employees should be extended the protection of the Act-public employees working for state, county and local governments and their political subdivisions and agencies. Public employment is one of the most rapidly growing fields of employment, and as of now there is little to protect the employee or potential employee from discrimination.
We would hape that the present requirement that complaints must be referred to state and local fair employment agencies could be deleted from the law. We believe that the effect of this provision is to unduly burden both the complainant and the EEOC and to delay final resolution. In the interest of efficiency and speedier justice we feel its elimination is in order.