Box 9, Folder 23, Document 10

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Box 9, Folder 23, Document 10

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LEADERSHIP
CONFERENCE
DN
CIVIL RIGHTS
I
ROY WILKINS , Chairman
ARNOLD ARONSON, Secretary
JOSEPH L. RAUH, JR ., Counsel
CLARENCE M. MITCHELL, Legislative Chairman
MARVIN CAPLAN, Di rector Wa shington Office
.
'
J. FRANCIS POHLHAUS , Special Con su ltant
'
2027 Mass. Ave., N.W., Washington, D. C. 20036 phone 667-1780
TO:
Participating Organizations
FROM·:
Arnold Aronson, Secretary
YVONNE PRICE, Executive As sistant

New York address : 20 West 40th St ., New York 10018, phon e BRyant 9-1400
MEMO NO. 21-67
Oc tober 2 7, 1967
A SOCIAL SECURITY BILL THAT PUNISHES THE POOR
What began as an attempt by Congress to modernize t he Social Security
Act has, in the bill the House approved, resulted in several proposa l s that seem
both backward and punitive.
Some of the House proposals come close t o taking the long di s c re dite d
view that the proper way to handle welfare is to insult the people who nee d it and
try to push or scare them off the rolls.
When Newburgh, New York, in 1962, proposed to cut off a ssis t ance t o
recipients who refuse to take any jobs offered to them, it was exco r iate d t hroughout the nation for its medieval attitude. Yet the House-passed bill (H. R. 12080)
has a provision that would authorize much that sort of treatm ent to depende nt .
mothers and their children.
When Louisiana sought to cut off-aid to mothers who gave birth to illegitimate children after going on r elief , the Department of Hea lt h, Edu ca t ion and
Welfare ruled the plan invalid, Yet the House, by placing a cei li ng on aid to
needy chil dren see ms to be t ryi ng, indirectly, to put i ts o wn limits on birt hs.
The social security a mend m ents are now before the S enate and ii is h ere
that we must concent rate our efforts for improvement s i n the 3 2-year-ol d s t a t ute
that will make it responsive to the present needs of American society.
A Loophole for Hos pitals
In one o f our re ce n t MEMOs (No. 19 - 67 ~ Octob e r 9) , we s o un d e d th e a larm
in regard to an a m endment that was not in the House - passed measure but was to be
proposed as an addition to the bill during cu rrent conside r a tion of it by the Senat e
"Cooperation in the Common Cause of Civ il Rights for All"
�PARTICIPATING ORGANIZATIONS
AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
NATIONAL CATHOLIC CONFERENCE FOR INTERRACIAL JUSTICE
AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL ZION CHURCH
NATIONAL CATHOLIC SOCIA L ACT ION CON FEREN CE
NATIONAL COMMUNITY RE LAT IONS ADV ISORY CO U NC IL
ALPHA KAPPA ALPHA SORORITY, INC.
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF CATHOLIC MEN
ALPHA PHI ALPHA FRATERNITY, INC.
NATIONAL COUNC IL OF CATHOLIC WOMEN
AMALGAMATED CLOTH ING WORKERS OF AMERICA
AMALGAMATED MEAT CUTTERS & BUTCHER WORKMEN
AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF CHURCHES-DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL
JUSTICE
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF JEWISH WOMEN
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF NEGRO WOMEN
AMERICAN ETHICAL UNION
AMERICAN FEDERATION OF LABOR ORGANIZATIONS
CONGRESS OF INDUSTRIAL
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF PUERTO RICAN VOLUNTEERS, INC.
NATIONAL COUNCIL OF SENIOR CITIZENS, INC.
AMERICAN FEDERATION OF STATE COUNTY & MUNICIPAL EMPLOYEES
NATIONAL DENTAL ASSOCIATION
NATIONAL FARMERS UNION
AMERICAN FEDERATION OF TEACHERS
NATIONAL FEDERATION OF CATHOLIC COLLEGE STUDENTS
AMERICA'\l JEWISH COMMITTEE
NATIONAL FEDERATION OF SETTLEMENTS & NEIGHBORHOOD CENTERS
AMERICAN JE#ISH CONGRESS
NATIONAL FEDERATION OF TEMPLE SISTERHOODS
AMERICAN NEWSPAPER GUILD
NATIONAL JEWISH WELFARE BOARD
AMERICAN VETERANS COMMITTEE
NATIONAL MEDICAL ASSOCIATION
AMERICANS FOR DEMOCRATIC ACTION
NATIONAL NEWMAN STUDENT FEDERATION
ANTI-DEFAMATION LEAGUE OF B'NAI B'R TH
NATIONAL NEWSPAPER PUBLISHERS ASSOCIATION
A. PHILIP RANDOLPH l"lSTITUTE
NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR MEXICAN-AMERICAN SERVICES
BISHOP'S COMMITTEE FOR THE SPANISH SPEAKING
NATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR WOMEN
NATIONAL SHARECROPPERS FUND
B'NAI B'RITH WOMEN
NATIONAL URBAN LEAGUE
BROTHERHOOD OF SLEEPING CAR PCRTERS
NEGRO AMERICAN LABOR COUNCIL
CHRISTIAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH
CHURCH OF THE BRETHREN - BRETHREN SERVICE COMMISSION
PROTESTANT EPISCOPAL CHURCH-DIVISION OF CHRISTIAN
OMEGA PSI PHI FRATERNITY, INC.
CHURCH WOMEN UN TED
PHI BETA SIGMA FRATERNITY, INC.
FAIR PLAY
CITIZENS LOBBY FOR FF
PHI DELTA KAPPA SORORITY
COLL EGL YCS NAT ONA
PIONEER WOMEN, AMERICAN AFFAIRS
CONGRESS OF RACIAL EQ
PRESBYTERIAN INTERRACIAL COUNCIL
DEL TA Sl(";MA THETA SORC11'TY
EPISCOPAL SOCIETY FOR CV TURAL AND RAC Al
FRANCS AN JIJRl<;D1CrlON O
"l TV
THE THIRD ORDE:R u• , T. FRANCIS
C11L
CHEMICAL & ATOMIC WORKERS INTERNATIONAL UNION
CITIZENSHIP
RETAIL WHOLESALE & DEPARTMENT STORE UNION
FRO"HIERS INTERNATIONAL
SOI., THERN BE.Au rv COl'..SRESS, INC
1-i DASSAH
SOUTHERN ~HR ST Ml LEADERSHIP CO'ffrnEt.CE
HOTEL ANO RESTAURANT EMPLOYEES ANO BAR~E DE.R;
INTERNATIONAL U'IION
TEXTILE WORKERS vN'ON OF AMERICA
IM ROVED AfNEVOLENT & PROTECTIVE ORDER OF ELKS OF THE WORLD
UNION OF AMERICAN HEBREW CONGREGATIONS
INDUSTRI L UNIC'II DEPARTMEN
r
AFL CIO
l'lTE "lAT'ONAL LAD[;:, GAR"'1EW WORKERc UNI N OF AMER CA
l"ITE'R lAT ONAL U"ll0N OF ELECTRICAL RAC!
IOTA l'H LAMBDA SORORITY,
JAPA
& MACHINE WORKERS
TRANSPORT WORKERS UNION OF AMERICA
UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST ASSOCIATION -COMMISS
& RACE
NON RELIGIJN
UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST WOMEN'S FEDERATION
UNITED AUTOMOBILE WORKERS OF AMERICA
NC
UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST- COMMITTEE FOR RACIAL JUSTICE NOW
AMERICAN CITIZENS LEAGUE
UN'TED CHURCH OF CHRIST- COUNCIL FOR CHR 1 T A"l SOCIAL .I\CTION
JEV., • H LAB R CC\o1MITTEE
UNITED HEBREW TRADES
JEWISH WAR VETERANS
LABOR ZIONIST OR ,A'l1ZAT 10N OF A
UNITED PACKINGHOUSE, FOOD & ALLIED WuRKERS
ER CA
LEA ,UL F-OR NDUSTRIAL DEMOCRACY
UNITED PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH -COMMISSION ON RELIGIONS. RAU
LUTf-!ERAN CHURCH 'N AMERICA--BOARD OF SOCIAL MINISTRY
UNITED PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH -
MED CAL C M'vilTTEE FOR HUMAN RIGHTS
UNITED RUBBER WORKERS
NATIO"lAL ALLIANCE OF POSTAL & FEDERAL EMPLOY ES
UNITED STATES NATIONAL STUDENT ASSOCIA llON
NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF COLORED PEOPLE
UNITED STATES Y UTH COUNC L
OFF 1CE. OF CHURCH & SOCIETY
NATIO"lAL ASSOC AT ON OF COLLEGE WOMEN
UNITED STf"LWORKERS OF AMERICA
NATI "lAL ASSOC AT ON OF COLORED WOMEN'S CLUBS INC.
UNITED SYNAGOGUE OF AMERICA
NATIONAL Ac;SOCIAT ON OF NEGRO BUSINESS & P'lOFESSIONAL
/OMEN'S CLUBS, INC
UNIVERSITY CHRISTIAN MOVEMENT
NATIONAL A SOCIA TIC. N OF RFAL ESTATE BROKERS,
I OF SOCIAL IC'Rl<ERS
NATION/\
A<;SOC ATI
NAT
BAPT ST CON E:.N
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A~
ON U S A
S'SC..C AT ON
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U. Ti.JR STS' L~GUE. 1",C.
NC.
UNITED TRANSPORT SERVICE EMPLOYEE'S
WOMENS INTERNATIONAL LEAGUE FC'
FE'\CE & FREEDOM
WORKERS DEFENSE LE.AGI.JE
• '
RKMEN S CIRCLE.
Y<.. UNG WOMEN'S CHRISTIA"!
ZETA PH BETA SORORITY
N UF THE USA
�·- 2 ..
F ina n c e C ommittee , T his wa s the a mendment offer ed by S e nato :r Herm an T a lmadge
(D-Ga. ) that would enable pat ients to re c e ive Fede ral m e dica l benefit s i n ho s pitals
that a re not in c omplian c e with the C ivi 1 Right s Act of 1964 . W e pointe d o u t, t hen,
the obvio us danger t h i s pos e s t o adequa t e enfo r cement of Title VI of the A ct, the
sect io n tha t enable s foe Federal gover nm ent to cut off funds to a ny F ederally-assisted
p r ogram t ha t disc r imin a t es.
A C omprom is e Effe c t e d
As thj_s M E M O is w r i t t e n , a corn p r o m is e a p pea r s t o have been worke d o u t
bet ween HEW and Senat o r T a lma dge. Patients in non-complyi ng ho spita l s w ould
sti ll be l"eimbur s e d , a lthough the p e r c e n ta g e of reimbur sem e n t no longe r appea r s to
be fixed. But in s tead o f a llowing s uc h reimbu r sements for a pe riod r unning fro m
the s t art o f M edicare i n J. 966 t o Decem b er 31, 1968 , the compromi se would m ove
the cutoff date for s u c h trea tment to De c ember 3 1, 196 7 .
W hile thi s is an im p rovem e n t, the amendm e nt s t i ll opens a loo p hole in Title
VI e nfor c ~ment and s hould still be oppo sed.
New Bu r d ens on the P o or
W hile the Talmadge am e ndment is the o ne that d ea l s mos t spe cifi cally with
a matt er o f c ivil right s , o ther p ro posals in t he House bill would fall s o heavily upon
t he urban poo r an d their large minority gro u p s , tha t it seem s incumbent upo n the
Leadership C onference to op pose them.
A t t he las t meeting of the Washi ngton r ep re sentati ves there was unanim ou s
agre e ment t hat in addition to oppo sing t h e T alma d g e amendme nt , the C onference
shoul d express it s opposition to three others:
1.
C ompuls o r y Wo rk and Training Programs
States w ould be re quired t o set u p work and train ing programs and a dults
and chi l dren over 16, who are no t in school, would be requir e d t o participate or
face the lo ss of as s istance . To moth er s getting he l p und er the Aid t o Families
with De pendent Chi ldren (AFDC ) program, thi s provision w ould come as a blow.
They wou l.d be fo rced t o ta,ke jobs o r t raining even t hough, i n ma ny cases, there
was no a d equate da y-care for their child r en and eve n though it was more important
for them to s tay h ome and ca re for their youngsters.
W hat's more, the r e a r e no assu r a nc es that the training would be thorough
or lead t o anything . It could ve ry w ell force them, i n the e n d , to wo r1~ in deadend job s for lov; wages. And ce rtainly fo r cing people to eithe r work or lose the
he l p they need for them selves and t heir children returns w elfare to about the leve l
of th e mid-Victorian poorhouses.
2.
Limits on Aid to Chil d r en
The House bill would limit assistance under the AFDC program to only the
perc entage of children in b roken home s, as r elated to all childr en unde r 21 in e ach
state , that was receiving help in January 1967 ,\ For instance, if three percent of th e
t-
�- 3-
minor children in a s t ate were i n b r oken h o m es and on AFDC in Ja nua r y, the s t a t e
could not get Fede ra l funds fo r mor e than th ree percent i n s ub s e q u e nt y e ar s , no
matter how large a n increase the r e might be in the numb er of poo r , f a t h er l ess
youngsters living in i t,
Hardest hit b y t his proposa l would , agai n, b e t he p e o p l e lea st a b l e t o bear
the burdens it wo u ld impose - - t he migra nts comin g f r om the rura l South to t he
cities. For those stat es in w hic h s u c h mi gra nt s u s ua lly s e ttle, the choi ce wou l d
be bleak: either t o assume the i n c r e a sed costs of c a ri ng for t h e de s titute o r t o
simply ignore them and invite f u r ther c hao s .
3.
Ben e fit s
The House b ill w o uld increa se s ocia l se cu rity b e n efit s by only 12 1 / 2 p e r cent
and r ai ses t he minimum b ene fit from th e present $ 44 to o nly $ 50 . T hi s is cle arly
insufficient to meet the ne e ds o f i ndivi d uai s and famili es whos e i n c om es a r e a lready
being eroded b y i nflati on. T h e Admin is t ration p roposa l c a ll s fo r a 15 pe rcent
across -the - boa r d increase and a 5 9 percent increa s e i n th e minimum to $ 7 •
Whi le many group s wi thi n the Leaders hi p C onferen ce fe e l e ven thi s incre as e
1s in s ufficient , t hey ar e wi lli ng to endo rse it as t he minimum am o unt . T h e C o n f erence c onsensus covers the amendment s o u t line d thu s f ar .
The r e are other a m e n dm ent s i n the b ill t hat indivi dual group s in the L e a d ership Confere n c e oppose . One part ic ula r ly, i s t he d ras ti c r est ri c tion the H ouse
bill im po ses o n t he new Medicaid ( T i tle XI X) program o f m edica l care for th e nee d y.
Inc o me lim it s wo u ld b e e stab li she d at o ne-th ird o v er the AFDC payment s leve l
which would ac tually cut off fr om M e dica id e li gibi lity w e lfa re reci pients in s o m e
stat es. The b ill a l so pe r mits s tat es t o c u t 1:b ack , on t he range o f med i c a l care se r vice s p rov i de d , inclu d in g the po s sibi lity of provi d ing neithe r hospital no r phy sic ia n
s ervices if other l es s e s sentia l servi ces are p rovi d e d in s t e a d .
What Ne e ds To B e Done
W e urge a 11 our parti cipating organiz atio ns t o join in o pposing a t least:
th e Talm adge a m endm e n t o n ho spital s ; the m a n da tory wo r k- training p ro visio n s
and t h e freez e on t he percenta ge o f d epend ent c hild ren who c an be h elped. We
sho uld strongly urge s ubstantially larger increases in s ocial security benefits,
bot h across the b o ard an d in the minim um payments.
P l e a s e write to members of the S enat e F inanc e C ommittee (li s t attache d)
and urge th e m to vot e against t hese and any other amendments that would l ea d us
back w ard , p lunge millions of poor people into despair a n d play into the hand s of
cynics who say C ongre ss is unab le to meet the press ing needs of our communities.
But please act now! To a gro wing and ala rming extent, the War on Pov erty
appear s to be s hifting into a War on the P oor .
- 30 -
�-4-
SENA TE FINANCE COMMITTEE
Russell B. Long (D-La.), Chairman
Democrats
George A. Smathers (Fla.)
Clinton P. Anderson (N. M.)
Albert Gore (Tenn.)
Herman E. Talmadge (Ga.)
Eugene J. McCarthy (Minn,)
Vance Hartke (Ind.)
J. W. Fulbright (Ark,)
A bra ham A. Ribicoff (Conn.)
Lee Metcalf (Mont,)
Fred R. Harris (Okla.)
Republicans
John J. Williams (Del,)
Frank Carlson (Kan,)
Wallace F. Bennett (Utah)
Carl T. Curtis (Neb.)
Thurston B. Mo r ton (Ky.)
Everett McKinley Dirksen (Ill.)

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