Box 18, Folder 21, Document 21

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Box 18, Folder 21, Document 21

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December 30, 1966
Honorable Ivan Allen, Jr.
Mayor of the City of Atlanta
City Hall
Atlanta, Georgia 30303
Dear Mayor Allen:
As we reach the close of 1966, I would like to take this
means of expressing my appreciation for the leadership
you are giving to Atlanta and for the help and encouragement you have extended to EOA in its effort to fight
I sometimes feel that you have a thankless and
lonely job, but when you measure the effect in making
Atlantg a great city, I am sure that you are pleased.
Please permit me to point out a real problem which might
be better solved without fund allocations.
We have noticed many ads in our local papers seeking
employees and at the same time, the city does have a
small degree of unemployment and perhaps a large degree
of under employment. Much is being done to correct this
problem and for this we are all grateful. However, I
would like to encourage you to call on your staff and
department heads to help offer part of the solution to
the real problem. I believe it could be done b y presenting four suggestions for their review and action.
Satisfactory employment is considered by many as the best
tool in fighting poverty.
"The United States must learn to
make better use of (1) unskilled workers, (2) older persons,
(3) women, and (4) the mentally retarded, if economic growth
is to continue;" says Commerce Secretary John T . Connor .
�Mayor Allen
2 -
December 30, 1966
If the City Administration (the department heads and
personnel officer) could keep in mind the employment
facet of our local problem, much might be accomplished.
As an e x ample, you might wish to suggest four avenues or
approaches which the department heads could consider:
Number 1. A greater use of Negro employees in all
levels of each of the cities services. Statistics
show that Atlanta cannot erase its poverty until
the manpower pool of Negro men and women can share
equal employment opportunities in both private and
Federal agencies. I am aware much h a s already been
done by some of the departments; however, this is
not enough, if we are going to erase poverty in our
According to the 1966 Human Resources Survey
in Atlanta's low income areas, 83% of the
available labor force are Negroes; 65% of the
, labor force are Negro Women.
Number 2 . The lowering of job qualifications in at
leas t six percent of the jobs in most of the city
departments would allow many presently unqualified
individuals to enter the city services.
In order
to insure success, department heads would most likely
find it necessary to provide on-the- job training or
some form of in-service train ing for this group of
employ ees . Continued success would demand that these
jobs not be dead end jobs .
Based on the recent Human Resources Survey
25% of Negro males and 26% of Negro females
h a v e le s s than a Gramma r Sch ool Edu cation.
64% or 2/3 of the Negroes su r vey ed h a d n ot
c omp le t e d High School.
Numbe r 3. A gr e a t u s e of n o npro f e ssio n al s as assistants to pro fessi o na l s in all areas o f the city s e r vice wo uld certainly h e lp us to place many d e servi ng
Atlantans in our city emp l oyme nt . While this is not
a new c onc e pt, since it has b een tried by both private
�Mayor Allen
3 -
December 30, 1966
and by city departments, it has not yet been
accepted to the point which we can expect the desired
results. EOA has employed over 300 such workers, and
we are happy to report that our results have been most
gratifying, and we think most successful.
83% of Negro females who reported earnings
in the Human Resources Survey earned less
than $3,000.00.
56% of Negro men who reported earnings
earned less than $3,000.00.
Number 4. A greater employment of women, especially
Negro women, would be most helpful to Atlanta's War
on Poverty. Without this effort, Atlanta's program
will be unsuccessful.
2/3 of all applicants visiting the Neighborhood Centers for employment assistance were
Of those surveyed in the Atlanta Human
Resources Survey, women made up 89"/4 of the
available labor market. Negro women made up
65% of this available work force.
Frankly, I cannot tell you how to get these four things done ,
but I feel certain if top administration of the city will
support these four suggestions , they will be agreeably surprised h ow middle management will be able to augment these
ideas and mak e them wor k.
Th e reason EOA would lik e to see these ide as put i nto p r act i c e
is b eca use i t does n ot add to our cost of fig h ting pov e rty,
b ut i t offers a r eal s olution to many of our disadv antaged .
I f EOA c an be o f h e lp in ref er ring ind i v i d uals t o th e empl oy ment o ffic e , we will b e glad t o ass i st .
S i nce r e ly y o urs ,
C . O. Emmerich

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