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American Jewish Committee Urges Speedy Enactment of New Federal Housing Law

April 23, 1968
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

The American Jewish Committee endorsed the proposed Housing and Redevelopment Act of 1968 and urged Congress today “to expand the Act as far as possible, so that the national commitment of 1937 — to replace slums with adequate housing — can finally be fulfilled.” It declared that “Federal legislation has fallen short of the official government estimates of need,” and asserted that “we can no longer afford the turmoil created by continual frustration. Unless we develop programs to meet actual needs, it is as though we plan in advance to fail.

The statement expressed disappointment that the Act provides for only 300,000 additional new housing units annually — rather than the 600,000 recommended by the Kerner Commission, but noted that “many of the Act’s new administrative and program provisions do offer possibilities for a fuller and fairer approach to the solution of our housing problems than we have ever had before.”

The statement pointed out omissions in three of the Act’s key provisions and said the Act should use language similar to that found in the Model Cities legislation, calling for “maximum opportunities” for employment of ghetto residents in construction.

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