Discrimination against Jews in employment, pending immigration legislation, the recent anti-Jewish outbreaks in Roumania, as well as an effort to bring about closer unity among Jewish organizations in New York, were among the questions discussed by the Jewish Council of Greater New York at its Convention Sunday in the Hotel Pennsylvania.
Judge Gustave Hartman, Bernard G. Richards and Congressman Samuel Dickstein, were among the speakers. Mr. Richards dwelt on the exchange of letters between the Roumanian Minister, George Cretziano and Congressman William I. Sirovich relative to the Roumanian situation. He expressed skepticism regarding the assurances given by M. Cretziano and asked that the Roumanian Government translate these verbal assurances into action.
A letter was read from Rabbi Stephen S. Wise, likewise expressing dissatisfaction with Mr. Cretziano’s statement.
Mr. Mordecai Soltes, in his opening address, summarized the activities of the Jewish Council and outlined a course of action for the future. He said: ‘Very serious charges have been made against the institutions of higher learning in Greater New York as well as throughout the country. It is claimed that there exists in our Colleges and Universities an academic boycott; that Jews of higher scholastic attainments are prevented from joining and in many cases adorning their faculties, unless they deny or ignore their Jewishness.
“The Council’s Committee on Discrimination, should investigate objectively the situation in our metropolis, and make the facts public. We can then rely upon our fellow Americans’ keen sense of fair play, to grasp the injustice in a procedure which tends to penalize our brethren because of their religious affiliation, and to sense the danger to American culture inherent in such intolerable conditions.”
Pointing to the alarming tendency on the part of employers in New York to discriminate against the employment of Jewish workers. Col. Morris J. Mendelsohn urged upon the Council to make a full investigation of the subject and to take public action to stop this un-American practice.
Mr. Z. Tygel and Mr. Marcus S. Gross reported on the work of the Council’s Bureau of Information and Welfare in assisting needy cases.
Among the resolutions adopted were: To memorialize Congress and urge the speedy passage of legislation aiming to unite the families of declarants; To support the United Palestine Appeal; To enlarge the scope of the Bureau of Information; To assist in the naturalization of Jewish non-citizens; To urge upon all Jewish organizations to affiliate with the Jewish Council; To protest against the continued anti-Jewish excesses in Roumania and that “in view of the many promises made by the Roumanian Government and the subsequent failure to keep those promises, the convention calls upon the Roumanian Government to prove by its policy and acts the intent to comply with its latest promises by its duly accredited representative to America.”
The following officers were elected: Honorary President Dr. Mordecai Soltes; President, Morris J. Mendelsohn; vice-presidents, Judge Gustave Hartman, Judge Adolph Stern, Herman J. Robbins, Max Silverstein, Dr. M. Eisenberg, M. S. Gross. Z. Tygel, H. Speier, and L. Diamant; Hon. Secretary, Samuel Caplan, Treasurer, John Robinton.