U.S. Moved Slowly Toward Greater Equality in 1953, Survey Shows

The United States continued to move slowly but perceptibly during 1953 toward greater equality for all Americans, regardless of race, creed or origin, according to a survey released today by the American Jewish Congress and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

In a statement issued with the report, the organizations stated that the progress made in 1953 and earlier years showed that the American people were ready to give full effect to the Supreme Court decision of May 17, 1954, outlawing racial segregation in the public schools and would “conform their practice to established public law and policy, whatever their personal attitudes may be.”

The report is devoted to an analysis of developments during the past year in 14 major areas of national life in which civil rights are an important issue, including employment, housing, suffrage, education, the Armed Forces, mob violence, group defamation and the nation’s capital.

The 189-page survey, in covering developments during President Eisenhower’s first year in office, notes that the newly-elected national administration “did not permit any retreat from gains achieved during previous years, pressed several important reforms toward conclusion” and took some steps “not previously attempted.” but “ventured no bold innovations.”

In a statement issued with the report. Dr. David Petegorsky, executive director of the AJC, and Walter White, executive secretary of the NAACP, said: “The Supreme Court decision of May 17, 1954, condemning racial segregation in public schools is a stirring reaffirmation of the fundamental American principle of equality and proof that our democratic system can correct its own defects through orderly legal processes.”

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