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League of Women Voters of Atlanta — Fulton County,.,. <..
Office of the Mayor
VoL. XL DECEMBER, 1967
Economic Opportunity Atlanta
The 1960’s were a turning point in public aware-
ness of large numbers of poor, living in the midst of
a prosperous United States. The ‘60’s were also im-
portant in terms of Federal involvement, seeing the
greatest amount of anti-poverty legislation since the
The previous decade affected the mood of the
nation. The Korean War ended, releasing resources
for domestic needs. The Civil Rights movement and
the Supreme Court’s school desegregation decision
emphasized equal opportunity for all persons. The
labor market began to feel the effects of automation
which eliminated many unskilled jobs. The nation dis-
covered rural (often, regional) and urban pockets of
poverty where families had experienced persistent un-
employment and poverty through several generations.
New attitudes towards poverty arose. The new
goals were to lift people out of poverty and change
the quality of their lives instead of providing custodial
care for them. Attitudes of the poor had changed, too.
In the past, many poor knew poverty as a temporary
state. Today, many poor persons see no way out of
poverty, regarding it as a permanent state for them-
selves and their children.
The 1960 census provided the statistical informa-
tion for definition of the extent of poverty in the
United States. In 1963, Michael Harrington in The
Other America stated that if the poverty level was be-
tween $3000 and $3500 for an urban family of four,
approximately 50-million persons would be living in
poverty. Leon Keyserling, former Chairman of the
President’s Council of Economic Advisors and author
of Poverty and Deprivation in the United States
(1962) estimated in 1963 that 34-million persons
would be defined as poor using Government criteria,
which at that time were $3000 per year for a family
of four and $1500 per year for an individual. He felt
that these were conservative estimates enormously
below the Department of Labor’s ‘modest but ade-
quate” budget in 1963: $6,000 for families and $2750
for individuals. Keyserling estimated that more than
66-million persons, 35/2 % of our population in 1963,
were living in poverty or on the verge of poverty in
Inception of EOA
Atlanta also was involved in studying the charac-
teristics and needs of its growing population. In 1962,
the Community Council of the Atlanta Area, an
independent social planning body, completed a study
of the city which ranked each census tract on a socio-
economic scale and determined which areas were
found to be poor then, according to Federal criteria
for poverty, and many of these poor lived in areas
adjacent to Atlanta’s Central Business District. Thous-
ands were unemployed, under-employed, functionally
illiterate, poorly housed, lacking adequate medical
care. The Community Council with foundation assist-
ance began a year-long pilot project, a demonstra-
tion service center in one of the neighborhoods. This
project demonstrated the need for realistic services
for individuals living in poverty—based on their own
suggestions—and the need for coordination on the
neighborhood level of all existing public and private
Armed with this knowledge and anticipating pas-
sage of the Economic Opportunity Act, Atlanta’s
Mayor, Board of Aldermen, and the Fulton County
Commissioners passed a joint resolution in mid-Aug-
ust, 1964, establishing the Atlanta-Fulton County
Economic Opportunity Authority. Major provisions
of the resolution were:
1. Establishment of the Authority, composed of 13
unsalaried members, six appointed by the Mayor,
six by the Chairmon of the Fulton County Com-
mission, with a 13th appointed by both to serve as
2. Provision for subsequent incorporation of the Au-
thority under Georgia laws as a non-profit, charit-
able, educational, and philanthropic corporation.
Authorization to hire an Executive Director and
Appropriation of City and County funds for organi-
zation prior to receipt of Federal funds.
Authorization to apply for, receive, expend, or dis-
pose of governmental funds.
Establishment of a Technical Advisory Committee
of representatives from local government and
7. Establishment of a Citizens’ Participation Com-
mittee of residents who are or have been adversely
affected by existing socio-economic conditions.
8. Implementation of a program mobilizing and util-
izing all public and private resources to combat
With assistance from the Community Council, the
Authority prepared an application for Community Ac-
tion Program (CAP) funds under Title || of the Eco-
nomic Opportunity Act of 1964 which it submitted on
November 16, 1964. Atlanta was among the first
urban areas funded; the initial grant was announced
on November 23, 1964. This grant provided $1,080, -
000 in Federal funds, to be matched by $120,000 in
local funds, and covered the period from November
23, 1964 to September 1, 1965.
Published February, April, June, August, October and December by the League of Women Voters of Atlanta-Fulton County. Publishing Head-
quarters——1401 Peachtree St., N.E., Suite 300, Atlanta, Ga. 30309, Entered as second class matter at Atlanta, Ga., under Act of March 8, 1879, Teague
membership; $6, which includes subscription to FACTS. President, Mrs. L. Glen Parham; Editor, Mrs. F. P. Rossman, assisted by Mrs. Sidney Davis,
Human Resources Chairman.
In June, 1965, as directed by the resolution, the
Authority was rechartered as a private, non-profit
corporation and renamed Economic Opportunity At-
lanta, Inc. The articles of incorporation stated, ‘’The
purpose of the corporation shall be to mobilize and
utilize all public and private resources . . . toward
the elimination of poverty through developing edu-
cational and employment opportunities, improving
human performance, motivation and productivity, and
bettering the conditions under which people live, learn,
and work . . .”’
EOA’s Board of Directors
When the policy-making Board was first created
by the joint resolution mentioned earlier, it was com-
posed of 13 appointed members. Enlarged to 15 mem-
bers, in June, 1965, as a condition of OEO’s 1966 CAP
grant to Atlanta the Board was enlarged, in late
Spring, to include four representatives of the poor, to
be elected by and from residents of low-income
neighborhoods qualifying for EOA programs.
On February 15, 1967, the Board again amended
the charter to change the composition of the Board
to its present form. (See organization chart) The
Board has retained its original members and added
more representatives of the areas served by EOA (1/3
of the members now are from these areas).
Advisory Committees, Block Organizations
Originally, two advisory committees existed: the
Citizens Participation Committee—5O persons af-
fected by poverty, who would provide information on
needs of the poor and help plan; and the Technical
Advisory Committee—50 representatives of local
agencies concerned with poverty, to help coordinate
and plan programs and to prevent duplication.
In 1966, elections were held in the neighborhoods
to choose representatives to serve on neighborhood
and city-wide advisory committees and the EOA
Board. Each EOA target area is divided into 20
or more “area blocks’. People living within these
blocks are encouraged to participate in organizing
block clubs, electing officers, and determining their
own agenda. The goals include involvement of more
residents and citizenship education. In 1967 11,528
persons voted in EOA neighborhood elections. Each
block organization chose one representative to serve
on its Citizens’ Neighborhood Advisory Council. Each
CNAC selected three representatives to serve on the
Citizens’ Central Advisory Council (CCAC), which
replaced the Citizens’ Participation Committee, and
one to serve on the EOA Board of Directors. The Tech-
nical Advisory Committee exists unchanged.
The administrative staff is in the process of chang-
ing its organizational structure. Its present structure
is shown in the organization chart which follows:
Economic Opportunity Atlanta, Inc.
under Office of Economic Opportunity
National - Regional - State
Policy-Making Board in accordance with Feb. 1967 charter amend-
ments would consist of 42 members with l-yr. terms:
members or 1/3 of total Board to be elected by democratic
procedure from target areas;
representatives of Atlanta/Fulton County community groups
and major public agencies concerned with poverty;
representatives of Atlanta/Fulton County poverty-concerned
groups, such as organized labor, businessmen’s associations,
major religious, minority, racial, and ethnic organizations and
private social service agencies;
[Selection of representatives is made by the groups or agen-
cies; designations of groups and agencies to be represented is
by the Mayor of Atlanta and the Fulton County Commission
Chairman, in consultation with EOA.]
representatives each from Gwinnett and Rockdale Counties—
one to represent county officials and public agencies, one rep-
resenting major community groups, and one a resident of
area served, to be selected democratically.
(Plus any other counties which choose to join EOA)
EOA's administration has had the reputation of
being consistently strong and dynamic. Mr. C. O.
Emmerich served as Executive Director until his un-
expected death in June, 1967. Mr. Thomas “Jim”
Parham was chosen by the Board as the new Executive
Director. A small administrative, planning, and cleri-
cal staff is located at 101 Marietta St. NW.
The heart of EOA’s program are the Neighbor-
hood Service Centers, where existing services and pro-
grams are coordinated at locations within the low-
income neighborhoods, Fourteen Neighborhood Service
Centers (NSC) were established during EOA‘s first
two years. Two of these are the Gwinnett and Rock-
dale County offices; the other 12 are located in At-
lanta and Fulton County. They are: Central City, East
Present Aministrative Staff
Assoc. Adm. Assoc. Adm, Assoc, Adm.
for for for
Operations Planning General Services
Intake and Refer-
Central, Edgewood, Nash-Washington, North Fulton,
Northwest (Perry Homes), Pittsburgs, Price, South
Fulton, Summerhill-Mechanicsville, West Central, and
West End. NSC staff members conducted approxi-
mately 33,000 interviews during the first two years,
and according to EOA figures, had held a total of
142,305 interviews at the end of August, 1967.
The centers provide as their major service an in-
formation and referral service which finds people who
need help and gets them to the appropriate services.
They offer limited general counseling, community
participation and organization through block groups,
neighborhood EOA elections, neighborhood commit-
tees working to solve problems; and some employment
as Neighborhood Aides (214 before 1967 budget cut,
145 now). Aides find families in need of help, direct
them to the Center, and maintain contact with them.
The needs of residents who come to the Center are
determined through counseling, and they are referred
or taken to the appropriate service. The three main
categories of service offered to citizens by the NSC
are Employment (Manpower) Services, Education, and
Social Services. Of all individuals coming to Neigh-
borhood Centers in Atlanta, 72% wanted jobs. In
addition to services offered by the NSC staff, other
programs are channeled through the Center, and other
agencies in the city have representatives in the Cen-
ter, either on a voluntary or contract basis. A num-
ber of EOA's programs are contracted by EOA to other
groups or agencies in the city, and then administered
by these contracting groups.
SUMMARY OF PROGRAMS
I. Administered by EOA:
Neighborhood Service Centers: Coordinate EOA services in neighborhoods served.
Neighborhood Youth Corps (out-of-school program): Job-training, employment for youths 16-21.
Men’s Job Corps (recruiting): Job-training at training centers for out-of-school unemployed boys 16-21. Recruiting from
VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America): Domestic Peace Corps.
ACEO—Atlanta Concentrated Employment Program: New program designed to train and place 2,500 consistently unem-
ployed or under-employed people in permanent jobs during the next year. Businesses, agencies, are to provide jobs.
Parent and Child Center: Planning grant received to design a parent education program for low-income families, including
planned parenthood, parent-child relationships, household skills, and use of community facilities. (EOA planning)
Price Area Health Center: New center to provide complete medical services, except hospitalization, for 22,000 people in
Price neighborhood. (Now being organized by EOA, Fulton County Medical Assn., Emory School of Medicine ,and 15
health and planning agencies working to establish center.)
. Contracted by EOA to other groups or agencies:
Headstart: Summer program for pre-school children from low-income homes (Atlanta Board of Education and private pre-
Day-Care Centers: Supervised care for children in order to release parents for job training and job opportunities (Private
Manpower Placement: Counselor in each Neighborhood Service Center to provide job placement and referrals to other
services (Georgia State Employment Service)
Atlanta Employment Evaluation and Service Center: A centralized service, first of its kind in the nation, to diagnose and
evaluate work potential and training needs of difficult cases and follow up job progress (Vocational Rehabilitation)
Legal Services: Previously, Legal Aid lawyers worked part-time at Neighborhood Service Centers. Presently, a central 7
Legal Assistance Center is located in the Fulton County Court House; two new Legal Aid centers operate in low-in-
come neighborhoods (Legal Aid Society)
Planned Parenthood: Family planning service (Planned Parenthood Assn.)
Multi-Service Centers for the Aged: Recreation, social service, and day care for families living in the three high-rise
apartments for the aged built by Atlanta Public Housing Authority (Senior Citizen Services of Metropolitan Atlanta)
Foster Grandparents: Provides children in institutions with adult affection and companionship while giving older citizens
useful, satisfying jobs. (Senior Citizen Services of Metropolitan Atlanta)
Neighborhood Youth Corps (in school): Training and employment of low-income high school youths to provide work
experience and money to enable them to remain in school (Atlanta and Fulton County Boards of Education)
Project Enable: Group education for low-income parents to increase self-help motivation (Atlanta Urban League)
Research Programs—1) Evaluation: 18-months evaluation of Atlanta’s CAP, under contract to OEO (Emory University
Center for Research in Social Change)
2) Electronic Data Processing Progam: Pilot study for automated accounting and financial work
(Electronics Data Systems Corp.)
. Independent Cooperating Programs:
Youth Opportunity Center: Counseling, testing, referral to other agencies for remedial education or training; for employ-
ment needs of youths 16-21 (Georgia State Employment Service)
College Work Study Program: Part-time employment to keep youths from low-income families in college (8 Atlanta area
Project Upward Bound: To reduce drop-out rate of 11th and 12th graders by providing remedial and interest classes and
encouraging them to seek further education (3 colleges: Morehouse, Morris Brown, Emory Univ.)
Women’s Job Corps: Job-training at training centers for out-of-school, unemployed girls 16-21; local recruitment (WICS—
Women in Community Service)
Crime Prevention: Police work in each Neighborhood Service Center to become friends with residents and help them with
their problems (Atlanta Police Department)
MDTA—Manpower Development and Training Act of 1962: Job training for needed skills (Georgia State Employment
Service and Atlanta Board of Education)
Project Hire—Help Initiate Renewed Employment: Employment service for the worker 50 and over (Georgia State Em-
Golden Age Employment Service: same as above (Atlanta section, National Council of Jewish Women)
Adult Basic Education: Instruction in reading and writing for adults over 18 who are unable to function on an 8th grade
level, to improve their employment potential (Atlanta Board of Education)
Programs discontinued due to lack of EOA funds:
Project Bees-Biz, community schools, homemaker
services during emergencies, home management train-
ing, four Public Health nurses, recreation programs
conducted by Recreation Technicians at Neighbor-
hood Centers, Small Business Development Center,
Volunteer Task Force.
Total FUNDS administered by EOA (figures from EOQA*)
12-1-64 thru 12-31-66 (2 years including initial CAP grant)
1-1-67 thru 12-31-67 plus funds to mid-1968 for some programs
Federal Local Total
$11,504,109 $1,904,042 $13,408,151
15,699,248 1,994,626 17,693,874
* All OKO grantees are required to have a CPA-approved accounting system and to submit regular professional, independ-
Economic Opportunity Atlanta, Inc. suffered a 38.2% budget cut in 1967, due to Congressional reductions. A 32% budget
cut is expected for 1968 due to changes in the way appropriations are handled even if Congress provides adequate funding.
The Center for Research in Social Change at Emory
University is under contract to OEO for an in-depth 18-
month evaluation of Economic Opportunity Atlanta,
Inc. — one of seven such evaluations in the nation.
Research has not been completed, no final judgments
have been made, and the report itself will be confi-
dential until released by Washington OEO. In August,
Dr. Fred Crawford, Principal Investigator, released a
short review of his first year’s work in which he stated
that Atlanta’s Neighborhood Service Centers have
had some impact in the community, particularly in
changing the lives of individuals by enabling them to
participate more fully in our socio-economic system.
One of EOA’s strongest accomplishments is involve-
ment of residents of poverty neighborhoods in the
activities of the centers, including their representa-
tion on the EOA Board. He also emphasized the im-
portance of citizens becoming interested in exercising
their voting responsibilities and registering to vote.
The evaluating staff has given its suggestions for
changes for greater efficiency and effectiveness tc
EOA, and the changes are being implemented. Dr.
Crawford stated, ‘’Viewed in terms of transition and
growth, EOA is making progress toward accomplish-
ing the goals established under the War on Poverty.
. . . EOA should be continued, refined, and expanded
to maximize its efforts to reach the total poverty
population in this metropolitan area.”
Poverty causes complex problems and attitudes.
In the initial enthusiasm created by anti-poverty ef-
forts, many persons expected immediate and dramatic
solutions and have been impatient with slow progress.
OEO and EOA provided a structure within govern-
ment which gives the poor a voice. Conflict has
often resulted with existing agencies over programs,
funds, and personnel. Some established institutions
and political groups have regarded the participation
and the votes of the poor as threats. Controversy has
resulted from direct Federal funding of local agencies,
which has left the program relatively free of strong
political influence up to the present. Criticism often
has been aimed at administrative costs, although these
are comparable with those of similar organizations.
For instance, the national Office of Economic Oppor-
tunity spends 3% of the entire OEO budget for ad-
ministrative costs — less administrative “overhead”
than the National Red Cross or the Salvation Army.
EOA has enjoyed good community relations and
support, and good press coverage. The Mayor of
Atlanta supported adequate funding, stating that EOA
was a major factor in keeping communications open
and preventing rioting here last Summer.
Many of the poor have registered to vote for the
first time, thus finding a voice in the political process.
Fulton County launched a permanent year-round voter
registration program, including Neighborhood Service
Centers among the 35 new registration centers.
The EOA staff is selected without discrimination
and is well integrated racially at all levels. The Board
is integrated racially, economically and socially, with
all its members sitting down together on an equal
basis to discuss community problems.
EOA has served as a structure through which the
city has accepted many federal grants. The economy
‘of the City of Atlanta has received a significant
boost from the over $25-million in federal money which
EOA has brought into the city over the past three
years, not to mention the economic ‘‘muliplier’’ effect
which touches off additional rounds of employment
and subsequent spending.
STATEMENT OF OWNERSHIP, MANAGEMENT
(Act of October 25, 1962; Section 4369,
Title 39, United States Code)
1. Date of Filing: October 11, 1967,
2. Title of Publication: FACTS.
3. Frequency of Issue: Bi-monthly.
4. Location of known Office of Publication: 1401 Peachtree
St., N.E., Suite 300, Atlanta, Georgia 30309,
5. Location of the Headquarters or General Business Offices
of the Publishers: Same as above.
6. Names and Addresses of Publisher, Editor and Managing
Editor: Publisher, League of Women Voters of Atla Fulton
County, (Address above). Editor: Mrs. F, P. Rossman, 1455
Hearst Dr., N.E., Atlanta, Georgia 30319.
7. Owner on-profit Organization listed ubove.
8. Known Bondholders, Mortgagees, and other security holders
owning or holding 1 percent or more of total amount of bonds,
mortgages or other securities: None.
9. Paragraphs 7 and § include, in cases where the stockholder
or security holder appears upon the books of the company as
trustee or in any other fiduciary relation, the name of the person
or corporation for whom such trustee is acting, also the state-
ments in the two paragraphs show the affiant's full knowledge
and belief as to the circumstances and conditions under which
stockholders ond security holders who do not appear upon the
hooks of the company as trustees, hold stock and securities in a
capacity other than that of a bona-fide owner. Names and ad
dresses of individuals who are stockholders of a corporation which
itself is a stockholder or holder of bonds, mortgages or other
securities of the publishing corporation have been included in
paragraphs 7 and 8 when the interests of such individuals are
equivalent to 1 percent or more of the total amount of the stock
or securities of the publishing corporation.
10 This item must be completed for all publications except
those which do not carry advertising other than the publisher's
own and which are named in section 192.291, 32.292 and
122.233. Postal Manual (Section 4955a, 4355b and 4356 of Title
39, United States Code).
Average No Copies
each issue during
preceding 12 mos.
Total No. Copies Printed
(not press run) 2,258 2,500
1) Sales thru dealers and
carriers, street vendors and
counter snules 425 520
2) Mail subscriptions 1,437 1,594
Total Paid Circulation 1,862 2,118
Free Distribution (including
samples) by Mail, Oarrier
or other means 0 0
Total Distribution 1,862 2113
I certify that the statements made by me above are correct
FRANCES H. ROSSMAN, Editor