Labor Unions and the Negro:
The Record of Discrimination
THE removal of the sanction of law from racial segregation has sharply posed the issue of the Negro’s status in virtually every area of American life. As much as the public schools, religious organizations, and business firms, the labor movement is on trial today. For labor’s democratic ideals are in serious conflict with a tradition of racial discrimination in the unions that is currently very much alive.
To some degree, union discrimination simply reflects the racial and religious prejudices among union members-prejudices that many unionists share with other prejudiced persons. Thus recently in the North, groups of white workers participated in violence against Negroes at Trumbull Park in Chicago and at Levittown, Pennsylvania. And in the South, workers have given considerable support to the White Citizens Councils and other groups seeking to perpetuate segregated institutions.
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