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the armed services just as much as the boy with a little bit higher educational qualifications required to be.
Secretary Wirtz. I don't know how to answer a young man who says to me, “Why should I go to the military service, when you let the bums out?" I don't know the answer.
Senator CLARK. Now, do you have anySecretary Wirtz (continuing). Except that I try to say to him, “Look, you call them bums, but let's ask why they are, and whose fault it is, and let's not jump to any easy conclusions."
I just make the point which I know you appreciate fully,
Senator CLARK. That is right. Are there any figures by which we can determine what percentage, or not necessarily percentage, the numbers of young men who are screened by the draft boards for this mental inadequacy before they get to the AFES? Are there any figures ?
Secretary Wirtz. As I stated earlier, some 140,000 were rejected last year at the local draft board level.
Senator CLARK. It would seem to me, Mr. Chairman, that that is a fairly important figure, because we are forgetting the whole story on this 616,000. A number of others have already been screened out at the local level, and probably screened out without much of any uniform qualification for the screening.
Senator KENNEDY of Massachusetts. Let me point out that this does not include those who have been disqualified for medical reasons.
Secretary WIRTZ. It does not.
Senator KENNEDY of Massachusetts. It is a different problem, yes, but there is also the possibility of rehabilitation within the medical field.
Secretary Wirtz. Perhaps even higher. Now, we do have one figure here. Last year 140,000 young men were rejected at the local draft board level. That is about the answer to it.
Senator CLARK. It is the answer to my question. So if you add 140,000 to 616,000, you have got a pretty good working figure, don't
Secretary WIRTZ. Yes, but let me point out that the 616,000 figure refers to mental or educational rejectors only and that it covers period of more than 2 years. And then you add a few more, a comparatively small number, who are rejected when they report for duty. There are the three points at which they go out.
Senator CLARK. And would you have any guess as to how many more were rejected for medical reasons ?
Secretary Wirtz, Just an averaging of a lot of different situations, Senator, it varies greatly from State to State.
Senator CLARK. It varies from draft board to draft board.
Secretary WIRTZ, No; I don't think this is primarily a draft board difference." It varies greatly from State to State, and the averages, I mean the figures on both health and education have a broad range. If my recollection serves me, a low of 3 percent educational disqualification in one State to 55 percent in another. And there is a very interesting, almost direct reversal as far as physical qualifications are concerned.
By and large, those States in which the educational rejections are low are those in which the physical rejections are higher. But it varies so that it is an averaging of pretty different things.
Senator CLARK. Yes; but-just one more question. Secretary WIRTZ. It comes out about a third. Senator CLARK. We do have an overall figure, don't we, and my recollection is it is somewhere in the neighborhood of 40 percent of young men of draft age who are rejected at some point before they are inducted for either mental or physical disqualification.
Secretary WIRTZ. I want to check 1 minute on this 616,000 figure. Does that correctly include just the mental ?
All right, the fullest, most recent report on that, Senator Clark, is in the National Advisory Commission's report. They have a section, on pages 57 to 59, on the rejected, in which they bring this down closest to date. Their information is better than ours, which is 3 years old.
Senator CLARK. Thank you, sir.
Senator KENNEDY of Massachusetts. While you are on this point, it is my understanding from the results of your study 3 years ago on about the education and the health of our youth, that most of the deficiencies with regard to health were directly due to poverty.
Secretary Wirtz. That is correct. A very great deal of it, bad teeth, bad insides, one thing and another. That is correct.
Senator KENNEDY of Massachusetts. Which could very easily be remedied, if detected and treated at an early age ?
Secretary WIRTZ. A high degree of it remediable. I suppose that report should be made part of the record, or at least I offer it for whatever use you want to make of it.
Senator KENNEDY of Massachusetts. I think we can make it part of the appendix.
Secretary Wirtz. All right.
Senator PROUTY. Mr. Secretary, does that record or study indicate the breakdown of the 570,000 which Secretary Morris suggested would be rejected for physical, mental, or moral grounds!
Secretary Wirtz. Yes, sir. It does. On a State-by-State basis. It is not-let's see, the classifications are physical, mental, or a combination of the two, as I remember it. But that information is available.
Senator Prouty. That figure is in front of you. I am concerned particularly with those rejected for physical reasons.
Secretary Wirtz. That is right. Yes; I was just looking, Mr. Chairman. There is a table which does show the kind of medical disqualifications. It is perfectly clear just at a layman's glance at it, that that is in the area which at least the layman identifies as remediable.
Senator KENNEDY of Massachusetts. I would ask one final question, and I am not sure about your particular capacity to respond. Also included in those rejected were those eliminated because of some kind of police contact. You might also have those who participated in various demonstrations, and so on.
Secretary WIRTZ. We have some limited information on that, in connection with the one experimental program, to which I refer in my statement.
I have taken a group of a thousand of these boys in Baltimore and in Washington, and gone into that situation a good deal more intensively, well, let me put it in a little broader context. We have taken a thousand boys in these two cities, worked harder on them than we have on the others, gone further with them.
Senator KENNEDY of Massachusetts. If you will let me interrupt you, because I think your next point
Secretary Wirtz. No. As a matter of fact, that particular figure is not in there. I have just described this experimental program, first in terms of the text here. It provides basic educational training and employment counseling for young men in Washington and Baltimore who volunteered for the Armed Forces but failed to pass the enlistment screening test. There are, I note, volunteers, rather than the draftees. I have asked for a breakdown of the results on that group, and it includes the answer to your question. .
Of that thousand whom we have worked with intensively, we have found these results and I note that about 70 percent of them were unemployed when they came into the test point. They are now 40 percent employed, and there are 15 percent unemployed but who are awaiting in jobs or military service. There are 8 percent in school. There are 5 percent in the Job Corps. There are 18 percent now who are in the Armed Forces. There are 2 percent who are in jail, but over 40 percent of them had law violations in answer to your question, before they came up to this point.
I don't think that there is broader information. In the surveys that they have just been making in the slums, the ghettos, and so forth, the hardest figures to get are the figures on the criminal records or the delinquency records.
You cannot get them, except by a very intensive survey, not through the individual himself, so the information on that, Mr. Chairman, is exceedingly limited. I can give it to you in pieces, and as we have looked into the slum situations recently, which are very much like the situations we have here.
That is a figure of sometimes frightening proportions. If I had to make a guess, and it is an informed but not educated guess, the answer to your question is that the delinquency record, the police record, of one kind or another, is a factor in probably about a quarter of the remaining youth unemployment cases. It is a factor in it. I don't say that it is a controlling factor. I have a feeling that is the one that we can most easily meet, more than we can some of the others, but it is a big factor.
Senator MORSE. Mr. Chairman
Senator Morse. I want to say, Mr. Secretary, that these fabulous statistics that you have been talking about, which have resulted also in, I think, a most fascinating colloquy between you and Senator Prouty and Senators Javis and Kennedy and Clark, puts its finger on one of the great psychological problems that concern us in this whole matter.
You speak of involuntaryism, and, of course, we want the maximum voluntaryism, and you point out that the young people don't want to feel that they are being required to do something. Now this is a pretty broad-spread attitude, not only among young people but older people these days, and I ask, what are you going to say to the college man that comes up and says, “Why should I go in service when the bums are exempted?” Part of the answer to him is, “Because you should not want to become a bum, which you will be if you follow the course of action that you are suggesting. ." Of course, it is not a good answer, but it makes a point of view I wanted to throw in.
But this brings up this whole matter of voluntaryism and freedom and liberty, lack of compulsion, from which I am afraid, may I say respectfully, we are inclined in Government, at both ends, the executive and legislative, to veer away from.
Secretary WIRTZ. Sure.
Senator MORSE. Because we don't want to face up to certain philosophical concepts that relate to abstract principles of governmental responsibility that we can't run out on. We can talk about freedom and voluntaryism. We must try to make clear from the beginning of kindergarten on through that none of us has the right to be illiterate, none of us has the right to follow a course of action that does not assume our citizenship responsibility. Therefore, whether you call it a universal service act, which is a misnomer or not, I think, we have a right, in the contract—the implied contract that every individual, when he comes into our society at time of birth undertakes as a citizen under our form of government—to assume that he must be willing to submit himself to those conditioning factors that will help make him a responsible citizen. That, in part, is going to be the answer to these people that want to say, “I have got a right to go my own way.” They have not a right or license to become a burden upon society.
But it is a question of the procedure by which you implement your objective, it seems to me. We certainly ought to be able to follow those procedures and leave no room for doubt that they are not free in the sense that they have a license to damage, but they are free in the sense that they have a duty to prepare themselves to permit acceptability on their part of the training that does prepare themselves to adjustability to our society. And I think there are many things that we can do, without formalizing it too much, to make available that training.
Labels are important. I will say, this is a voluntary program, you are going to give them some choices. But you are going to also make sure to them that they don't have one choice, and that is the choice to be an anarchist in one form or another, by saying, “I am going to select for myself the laws I am going to obey, and those that I am not. I am going to select for myself the training program which I will be subjected to, and that means my right to exclude all training programs and become a burden."
a It is going to take time, and it is hard to accomplish, but we have got to do it. Otherwise, you are never going to get a fair service act. You are never going to eliminate the injustices where the one says that he does not want to go because the bums don't have to go. You have got to see to it that he is protected, but that the other side is obligated, and it is a question of what the society through government has the right to do by requiring obligations to be performed
It is awfully hard to get people to face up to those abstract principles of government, but they are there, and we in the Congress, in my judgment, cannot justify running out on them, and I think, too often, we do.
Senator Javits. Mr. Chairman, I would like to say that Senator Morse expresses my views exactly. We have developed a consensus, and have torn the cover off a secret recess which has hidden a real injustice, and I am very grateful myself to my colleagues and the chairman and to Secretary Wirtz, for what has developed here this morning, on this specific matter.
Secretary WIRTZ. May I find just a footnote, Mr. Chairman.
It is such a sensitive point. I find for myself encouragement in the possibility that the society will recognize that what we are talking about need be no more than an extension of the good sense that led us to compulsory education up to age 16.
Now, we have long ago gotten over our allergy for the compulsory element in that. When we devised that system, 16 years of education was all it took to qualify most people for the work opportunities and the demands of citizenship. Today, it takes more than that, because of various developments. I don't see any reason why that concept needed development cannot be extended to cover everything up to the point at which an individual becomes self-supporting, which is the intention of the program.
Senator MORSE. A perfect analogy, and very good.
Secretary WIRTZ. On this, let me just close this point, Mr. Chairman, by saying that it has to be recognized, it seems to me, that any military service system which sends a man who has developed himself to battlefield and then send another boy who has wasted his life back to gang warfare in slums or ghettoes is wrong.
It is wrong on two counts. It wasted an opportunity to take someone who needs it by the shoulder and straighten him up, if that is possible, and then it is just unfair.
Now, the fourth point, on the broader potential of training received in military service. This point has been developed by Thomas D. Morris, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Manpower, and there is no point in my going into it further.
And I think there is no point in my going into it here, unless there may subsequently be questions about it.
The fifth point is one of peculiar interest and responsibility to the Department of Labor and it is introduced with another fact that takes me aback: We had very high employment in 1966, and yet, despite that, one in every five men discharged from military service during the year received unemployment compensation for an average of over 10 weeks. Half of the 550,000 discharged veterans in 1966 sought the assistance of local employment service offices.
It is clear, just from these two statistics, taken from a good many more, that we have not completed this bridge between military service and employment. We have in the Labor Department two programs which deal with this situation. Every person who leaves permanent jobs in private employment to enter military service have, by law, certain reemployment rights.
They are entitled to be reemployed in the position they would have occupied but for military service. Seniority accrues during their term of duty, along with the promotions, pay increases, and other benefits related to seniority. Through the Office of Veterans' Reem