Philadelphia Insunance Companies Bar Jews from Management Position

The Philadelphia Chapter of the American Jewish Committee reports in a study released today that barriers to the involvement of Jews in management level posts in major insurance companies in Philadelphia still remain. The survey is based on extensive interviews with high ranking officials and examination of reports and other sources of six major life insurance and fire and casualty companies with headquarters here by the staff of the AJ Committee’s Pennsylvania office.

The report said that one of the 187 officers of the six companies was Jewish. It added that there was only one Jewish board member among the 109 of the companies. The study was of managerial and policy making personnel rather than general agents who, usually, are not employees of the companies. The study is one of a series of AJ Committee reports and surveys of the relationship of Jews to major business and industry in the Philadelphia area. In March of this year, the Jewish group released an analysis of “patterns of exclusion” among 16 industrial corporations and 10 other business organizations here.

The Jewish group points out that “a conscious effort must be undertaken by top management of insurance companies to make the companies seem more open and desirous of obtaining minority group personnel. The virtual absence of Jewish board members sends out invisible signals to the Jewish community even when the company is anxious to have Jews in its employ.”

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