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native population resulted in more people who could afford their own homes or apartments. Moreover, the employment rise since the end of the war in the nonmanufacturing industries-primarily the services and trades-has almost offset the substantial declines in shipbuilding, airframe, and other manufacturing employment on the Pacific Coast since VE-day. The housing situation, therefore, has remained acute throughout this region.
Unless further increases in the number of new housing units are shown for the next few years, the situation will remain tight, because the housing needs of returning veterans and their families who have been living doubled up in single dwelling units will more than compensate for any out-migrants who may have left as the war industries shut down.
Only the Far Western States and the South, where most of the military installations were located, showed population increases during the war years. The Northern States declined, as inductions depleted the civilian population, and war workers migrated to new war centers. The Middle Atlantic States showed a million and a half decrease in population during this period, and the West North Central States declined over a million.
Reflecting its increasing population, the South Atlantic States ranked next to the Pacific in the total number of new dwelling units for which permits were issued or contracts awarded in 1945. This group of States showed 43,400 units or 17.6 percent of all the units in nonfarm areas, and Florida ranked third among the States in number of nonfarm dwellings in 1945, with 17,400. Texas with its many military installations and petroleum industry ranked ahead of Florida, however, with 26,500 new units.
Among the regions, the East North Central States ranked third with 41,700, or 16.9 percent, of the total number of new dwelling units for which permits were issued or contracts awarded in nonfarm areas in 1945. It was estimated that Illinois, with its highly diversified industrial areas, scheduled 12,100 nonfarm units in 1945. During the war years, housing shortages in Chicago occurred as a result of enlargement of the packing and chemical industries, as well as ordnance, and transfer of Federal agencies from Washington, plus expansion of war agencies. Michigan and Ohio, each scheduled 10,400 new dwelling units in 1945. The former, the center of the automotive and aircraft engine industries, experienced acute housing shortages throughout the war years particularly in the Detroit area, where the housing situation remains critical. Ohio, the rubber center of the world, also engaged in wartime production of steel, machinery, chemical products, aircraft, and experienced a housing shortage which has not been relieved.
In New England, where there was an established industrial economy with diversified manufacturing, a population decrease of 3 percent took place from 1940 to 1945. Only 5,500 new dwelling units were reported in nonfarm areas in 1945, or 2 percent of the national total. Although there was much less in-migration than occurred in many areas, the housing situation in New England has remained acute in a number of places, with little prospect of relief as veterans have returned in increasing numbers, and the principal industrial centers have reconverted to peacetime production.
First Year Under New York Law Against Discrimination' CONCILIATION proceedings conducted by the New York State Commission Against Discrimination in the first year of its operation met with marked success. During that time the commission passed upon more than 300 complaints charging discrimination in employment. It was not necessary in any case which reached the conciliation stage to advance beyond it to the next stage-that of a formal hearing.
The New York law against discrimination, which came into effect on July 1, 1945, declares that the opportunity to obtain employment without discrimination is a civil right. It does not dictate to the employer whom he shall employ, but it forbids discrimination in employment practices because of race, creed, color, or national origin,2 by employers,3 labor organizations, or employment agencies.
The agency given power to administer the law is the State Commission Against Discrimination, the five members of which are appointed by the Governor, by and with the consent of the senate. The commission has power to receive, investigate, and pass upon complaints involving discrimination in employment. The prompt use of "conference, conciliation, and persuasion" is mandatory as the next step after investigation. The commission may hold hearings and subpena witnesses. It also may create advisory agencies and conciliation councils and initiate surveys and programs tending to eliminate discrimination and promote good will. Penalties are provided for resistance of the lawful work of the commission or willful violation of its orders.
Of the complaints received by the commission in the first 11 months of operation, about half specified color, and about 30 percent creed or religion, as the cause of the alleged discriminatory practice. The remainder, about 20 percent, charged discrimination because of national origin.
Besides the handling of complaints, the work of the commission has included service to employers, nearly 1,000 of whom have requested review of their employment practices in regard to compliance with the law. A number of questions which it had been the practice of employers to include in the inquiries inserted on application blanks were found by the commission to be discriminatory. The commission
1 Data are from New York State Commission Against Discrimination, Inside Facts, Albany, 1946; Laws of New York, 1945 (ch. 118); Monitor, Buffalo, June 1946, Operation of State Discrimination Law, by Edward W. Edwards.
The statute provides that the term "national origin" shall include "ancestry."
Provisions of the law do not apply to employers of less than 6 persons, to domestic employees, or to employees of nonprofit organizations of a fraternal, religious, charitable, social, or educational nature.
recognized that such inquiries frequently were made for the purpose of checking on an applicant's honesty and character, and without intent to discriminate; it held, however, that the needed information could generally be obtained through channels that did not reveal the applicant's race, creed, color, or national origin.
Although the law recognizes that there are certain bona fide occupational qualifications, it is held by the commission that, as a general rule and subject to particular facts in specific instances, an attribute of race, creed, color, or national origin will not be deemed a bona fide occupational qualification unless the attribute is material to job performance. Also, it will not as a general rule be considered material to the existence of a bona fide occupational qualification that a certain practice is traditional, or that customers, employers, and employees prefer to deal or work with persons of a particular race, creed, color, or national origin.
Certain rulings of the commission, interpretive of the law, as to questions that may be asked and requirements that may be made of those applying for employment are listed below: