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Hias Annual Meeting Asks United States to Scrap Mccarran Act

A resolution calling upon the United States Government to repeal the present immigration law and enact in its place liberal measures provided by Sen. Herbert H. Lehman and others, was adopted here today at the 69th annual meeting of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society (HIAS). The meeting also approved a budget of $1,639,250 for 1954.

The delegates, representing more than 3,000 organizations which support HIAS, also hailed the agreement to merge HIAS and United Service for New Americans to eliminate duplication of function and other inefficiencies and improve service for the immigrants. Other resolutions urged the United States to take action in the UN to bring about peace between Israel and the Arab states and to aid Israel financially, and hailing the expanding HIAS program in Israel.

Senator Lehman, who received a scroll of honor from HIAS for his work in the field of immigration, told the delegates that the McCarran Law “must go.” He said that the Eisenhower Emergency Refugee Relief Act “has turned out thus far unworkable” and “bids fair to become–unless its defects are somehow cured–a legislative fraud and delusion.” He called for an immigration program which would admit to the U.S. 250,000 immigrants annually.

Ben Touster, president of HIAS, in his annual report, said that as 1953 ended there was a case load of 30,000 immigration applications on file in HIAS’ European offices. He estimated that 7,000 Jews would enter this country during the current year.

Dr. Arthur T. Jacobs, executive director of the organization, reviewed HIAS’ expanded program in many countries during the past year and the increased working which made expansion necessary. He also reported on HIAS cooperation with international agencies and governments, including that of Israel, in pursuance of its immigrant assistance programs.

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