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Stephen S. Wise statement to the Sub-committe of the Senate Committee on Labor and Public Welfare

Stephen S. Wise was a Reform rabbi who had dedicated his life to issues of social justice within and outside of the Jewish community. He was one of the founders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and also served as the president of the American Jewish Congress. His daughter Justine Wise Polier also worked on behalf of underprivileged people. The quote below comes from Rabbi Wise’s testimony, as President of American Jewish Congress, during a Senate sub-committee hearing relating to discrimination in employment in
1947. [Exact date unknown.]

Our movement recognizes fully that equality of opportunity for Jews can be truly secured only in a genuinely democratic society. Accordingly, we seek to fight every manifestation of racism, to promote the civil and political equality of all groups and persons in America, and to support measures designed to safeguard civil liberties and to build a better America. We regard ethnic discrimination, whether directed against Jews, Negroes, Chinese, Mexicans, or any other group, as a single and indivisible problem and as one of the most urgent problems of democratic society.


Stephen S. Wise, President, American Jewish Congress, “United States of America, Before a Sub-committee of the Senate Committee on Labor and Public Welfare, holding hearings on S. 984, a bill to prohibit discrimination in employment because of race, religion, color, national origin, or ancestry.” CLSA Reports, American Jewish Congress, New York. Source provided by Marc Dollinger and the American Jewish Archives.

Other license (see note)
Date / time
Wise, Stephen S.
Papers of Stephen S. Wise, box 64, American Jewish Historical Society.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Stephen S. Wise statement to the Sub-committe of the Senate Committee on Labor and Public Welfare." (Viewed on January 16, 2018) <>.


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