Large Number of Employment Agencies Violate N.Y. Anti-bias Law

Over 70 percent of 222 commercial employment agencies in Manhattan are violating the New York State Law Against Discrimination by accepting telephone orders for a “white Protestant” stenographer, according to the results of a new survey by the American Jewish Congress, which were made public today.

In submitting the findings of this survey on discrimination in the field of employment to Governor Averell Harriman and leading members of the State Legislature, the American Jewish Congress urged the enactment of the Morrit and Baker bills now before the State Senate and Assembly which would strengthen the present law by authorizing the State Commission Against Discrimination to issue complaints on its own initiative without being required to wait until a particular aggrieved applicant files a complaint.

The latest survey is the fourth such study designed to test the extent to which the New York law has been honored, Earlier surveys were conducted in 1946, 1949 and 1952. The 1955 study reveals that discriminatory practices by employment agencies are on the rise. In 1952, 65 percent of commercial agencies accepted phone orders for a “white Protestant” stenographer; in 1949, the total was 64,2 percent; while in 1946, one year after the law went into effect, the proportion was 88,4 percent.

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