National Bill to Bar Discrimination in Employment Introduced in House and Senate
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National Bill to Bar Discrimination in Employment Introduced in House and Senate

Senator Irving M. Ives, N.Y., Republican, today introduced in the Senate a “National Act Against Discrimination in Employment” and an identical bill was introduced in the House by Mrs. Mary T. Norton, Democrat of New Jersey.

Senators who joined Ives in sponsoring the bill were Republican Senators Saltonstall of Mass., Smith of New Jersey and Morse of Oregon, and Democratic Senators Chavez of New Mexico, Murray of Montana, Myers of Pann. and Downey of Cal.

“It is not an FEPC bill,” Ives said in introducing the measure. “It proposes a new approach for handling the problem of discrimination in employment discrimination because of race, religion, color, national origin or ancestry.” The FEPC was based on principles of legal compulsion whereas the new bill will attempt to eradicate discrimination by “education and conciliation.”

The bill calls for the establishment of local, state, and regional advisory and conciliation councils to enable communities to work out questions of employment discrimination voluntarily. This will “pave the way for a broad, educational approach in handling this problem,” Ives pointed out.

The measure provides for court review and enforcement of the commission’s findings and directions. It empowers the commission to issue cease and desist orders, and includes detailed provisions for judicial roview and enforcement. It specifically provides that the commission may act upon a sworn charge alleging discrimination in employment filed by or on behalf of a person claiming to be aggrieved or by a member of the commission. Previous bills did not make clear whether the commission could act upon its own initiative.

The bill declares that the measure is enacted as a step in the fulfillment of treaty obligations, undertaken by ratification of the United Nations Charter, to promote “universal respect for, and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms for all without distinotion as to race, sex, language and religion.”

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