1931 Was One of the Most Difficult Years for Jews Says Hilfsverein President at Annual Conference
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1931 Was One of the Most Difficult Years for Jews Says Hilfsverein President at Annual Conference

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The year 1931 was one of the most difficult for us Jews, Dr. James Simon, the President of the Hilfsverein der deutschen Juden, said in opening the 31st. annual Conference of the Hilfsverein held here this week. Distress and misery is increasing among the Jews in Germany and abroad, he went on.

The members acclaimed Consul-General Eugen Landau, former Chairman of the Hilfsverein, and now Vice-President, on the occasion of his recent 80th. birthday. Last year, the Hilfsverein decided, on the motion of Mr. Max, M Warburg, to establish a James Simon Fund in honour of the 80th, birthday of its President, Dr. James Simon. At the present meeting, Dr. James Simon moved that a similar Fund, to be known as the Eugen Landau Fund, should be established in honour of Mr. Landau, and in recognition of his work for the Hilfsverein since its formation.

Dr. Joachimssohn, the Treasurer, in submitting the financial report, said that in spite of all difficulties, the Hilfsverein had stood firm during 1931. Income had been diminished, but a considerable sum had come in for the James Simon Fund, and they could say with pride that the Hilfsverein had not had to give up any of its branches of work. On the contrary,

it had extended its work during the past year. They had, for instance, the Haffkine Endowment Fund, Which was established by the great bacteriologist, who had appointed the Hilfsverein as his trustee, and the interest of which yielded a considerable sum which went for the support of Yeshiboth. The James Simon Fund had with the consent of Herr James Simon given 7,000 Marks for the Biram Schools in Haifa during 1931, and 11,000 Marks will go in 1932 to schools in Poland, Roumania, and the Orient. The Hilfsverein had also taken part in the relief work in Russia, and it had continued to assist the Ukrainian orphan children in Germany, and to provide assistance to Jewish students in Germany.

Dr. Mark Tischnitzer, the Secretary-General of the Hilfsverein, said in the court of his report that immigration had been considerably reduced in 1931. Canada, Mexico, Cuba, Argentine, Brazil, Australia and other countries had cut down immigration more than ever on account of the economic depression. The United States of America had also enforced drastic administrative restrictions on immigration. Since the Immigration #uota Restriction Law was enacted in 1924, an average of 11,300 Jews had, in spite of the restrictions, entered the United States as immigrants every year, but in the second half-year of 1931 only 1,455 Jews had succeeded in entering the country.

Dr. Wischnitzer also spoke of the education-aid work of the Hilfsverein, and emphasised that the organisation had continued to co-operate with the leading Jewish organisations in England, France, and America, in the work of protecting Jewish rights, regulating migration, and in other branches of social, cultural and political work.

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