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ble to permit the men to be taught on company time. There can be no doubt that if these men are not “ docked ” for the time spent in classes the number we can reach will be much greater.
Manufacturers may well aid in the work, if they wish, by increasing the wages at least slightly of those employees who learn to speak English. That they will be justified in this there can be no doubt. Employers everywhere testify that their men are more efficient, loyal, and valuable after they secure a knowledge of the English language.
Wage discrimination is one of the best ways to stimulate the alien's desire for Americanization. The non-English-speaking alien is a less valuable einployee and should be made to understand it. He is also the great accident hazard, and it is needless to say that the workman who understands deaf and dumb signs only is the less efficient employee. For this reason the alien who becomes Americanized should receive higher wage than the one who is not. And the wage scale should be graduated to cover each step in the proceess of citizenship.
The classes in industry should teach the men the vocabulary of their trade and the means of protecting themselves from the particular hazards of that occupation. This will be the employer's direct return for his investment.
The safety department of an industry should also become a factor in Americanization. While we are apt to interpret safety work in terms of the industry, it is of just as much value to the individual. To be careless is to be a poor citizen, To be made to feel that industry has no interest in its employees beyond their work and wages tends to develop a spirit of laissez faire, which is thoroughly un-American. Lessons on safety precautions are just as essential in a class for new Americans as are lessons in the history of our Government."
Wherever possible the employer should designate some member of his staff as plant director of Americanization, who will be the point of contact of the school authorities with his men.
The success of any Americanization program in industry depends, of course, upon the hearty cooperation of the management. A wise manager, in order to secure success in such a venture will have some man appointed as a supervisor of Americanization in the plant, who is definitely responsible for the promotion of the program and who is released from other duties, so that he will have sufficient time to carry it out. It is unnecessary to say that this supervisor must be a person who appreciates the value of education, who recognizes the need for Americanization work in the plant, and who has a sympathy with these foreign-born men and their problems and a real appreciation of their backgrounds.
Workers interested in the formation of classes in industry should read the papers persented upon this subject at the Americanization
1 William Lamkie, in Conference Proceedings.
Conference by Messrs. Roberts, Weber, Speek, and Rindge. Upon the subject of a plant director the first named has this to say:
All of the teaching under any plan for carrying on classes in the industrial plants should be under the direction of the public schools. Only in this way can all parties concerned--the employer, the employee, and the public-be certain that the work is wholly disinterested.
There must be some one delegated by the factory management to see that all obligations assumed by the plant are fully carried out, and this person must always be on the job. It will not do merely for him to say “there is the room and the men are at liberty to come at the agreed time.” The most satisfactory arrangement is to have the general responsibility vested in a member of the employment department, or welfare department, under whose direction an employee, such as a foreman, timekeeper, or one of the men of the group taking instruction, is responsible for seeing that the room is always in order; that reports wanted by the management are made; that at the close of the lesson the door is locked, books and materials put away safely, and all is ready for factory use next day. Such attendants are usually paid a small amount in overtime for this service. Their help is at times exceedingly valuable. They relieve the teacher of responsibility when complaints are made that the room was not left in proper condition for use for other purposes between class periods.'
In some cities several plants have joined hands to employ a director of Americanization. This may be a most suitable way out, particularly with smaller plants.
Three years ago, through the chamber of commerce at Farrell, a director of Americanization was hired through the efforts of 10 of the leading industries in this section. The school board finally consented to the use of two school buildings for the evening classes. At the end of the first school year the register showed a total of 400 students, with an average attendance of 175. The second year found the school more prosperous than ever before. The third year, after the industries had proven that every class for foreign-born pupils could be made a success, the school board took over this activity and operates it now under a special budget."
Unless the sympathetic cooperation of the foremen of a plant can be secured, the work will be difficult.
Before any attempt is made to organize a program the foremen should be called together, not once but many times, and have presented to them the needs of their foreign-born men and how they may be met, and the extremely important part which the foremen have in making this program successful.'
The foremen are not only in position to know the problems of the foreign born in industry, but they can help as can no other in solving them. Their cooperation is necessary if the men are to be relieved from their tasks to attend the classes. They can protect the students
1 W. M. Roberts, in Conference Proceedings.
A, H. Wyman.
from overtime work that will interfere with their studies. An encouraging word now and then from the foremen will assist wonderfully in maintaining attendance. If the employees come to feel that their foremen and employers are anxious to have them better themselves, a spirit will enter into their work that can be secured in no other way.
The foremen canapproach the leaders of the various racial groups in the shop and explain to them clearly just what is proposed in the plant and the reasons for its being Gone, thereby enlisting their intelligent interest and cooperation. Then the foremen together with these racial group leaders will take the census of the plant, discovering all men and women who speak little or no English, who can not read or write, and also discover men who are not American citizens. Haring the census taken, it is very helpful to have meetings of the various racial groups and to have a speaker of their own group present the opportunities which the management is offering to them and the reasons why they should avail themselves of this chance to better understand American ideals and traditions ?.
No matter what may be the exigencies of his position, a wide-awake foreman will attempt to get into personal contact with the men who are under him, and if he himself has an appreciation of American ideals, he can not fail to impart some of that appreciation to the men with whom he comes in contact. Too much emphasis can not be placed upon the necessity for the foreman maintaining a proper attitude toward the men working under him. He is the industry's personal representative in the workroom, and with him rests more than with anyone else the daily interpretation of the industry's attitude toward American ideals as they are related to employment. In a number of industries, at the present time, definite work is being carried on in the education of foremen to an appreciation of the opportunities which they have for cooperating with Americanization work, and for becoming active agents in carrying it on.'
THE EMPLOYER'S INFLUENCE.
No other task before the workers in Americanization of a community compares in importance with that of securing the cordial sympathy and cooperation of the manufacturers and other employers.
It is not that the employer is either legally or morally responsible for a nation-wide task. He is simply in a strategic position. He has a determining influence in Americanization. If inside the plant he has one set of rulings for the natives and another set for the foreign born; if he has company houses for the native born and tar-paper bunks for the foreign born; if he has a scientific employment system for the native born and gets the foreign born by the bulk from the padrone; if he has hearings on discharge for skilled workmen and nothing at all for the non-English-speaking foreign born but the word (often an oath) or the temper of the foreman; if he has different standards of justice and operation for native and foreign born, he is not carrying his end in building up an American citizenship in that town. The workman
spends most of his waking hours in the factory. His judgment of that town and his judgment of America are going to be largely based upon what he finds in the job.'
Americanization workers, however, should guard against leaving the entire problem to industry. The conditions of the job vitally influence the view point of the immigrant as has been stated, but the social and community conditions have an equal bearing upon whether or not that immigrant is to become a loyal citizen of America.
Outside the plant, too, the employer and the town must work together. It is not the employer's business to teach his men English ; and get the public school can hardly do it without his cooperation in giving the school authorities a list of all foreign-born employees, in furnishing facilities for factory classes, in following up school records, and in other ways constantly backing up the public policy of the town.
It would be far too sweeping to sily that the Americanization of an industrial town depends upon the employer. Employers justly resent that position, and so do the foreign born. The latter want Americanization through American fellowship and American institutions, supplied as the public policy of a nation and a community, not by the “ welfare” projects of one man or of one corporation. And yet unless the industry is solidly behind the community, working with it at every turn, it will take a long time to put America into your town.'
1 Esther Everett Lape.
SOCIAL PHASES OF THE PROBLEM.
In communities where the American public has come to know the immigrant for what he is—and there are such communities-the problem of Americanization has been stripped of much of its difficulty. The school authorities should foster in every possible way the interest of the American public in the people who attend the evening schools. Because let it be said again and again-the task of Americanization is one, not for the American school alone, but for the American people, operating through every instrumentality of an organized social life. The teacher can do comparatively little working alone.'
Neither education nor naturalization will make true Americans. Many an American whose heart beats true to the ideals of America can speak English but brokenly. On the other hand, many an enemy of all that America stands for speaks our language fluently, and may, in fact, have been born in the shadow of our flag. Our task, therefore, is much broader than mere education and naturalization, important as they are. Our duty to our new Americans will not be done until we have Americanized the schools their children will attend, Americanized the water their families drink, Americanized the air they breathe, and the houses they live in; Americanized their play, their work, their surroundings.
We want to interpret America in terms of fair play; in terms of the square deal. We want in the end to interpret America in healthier babies that have enough milk to drink. We want to interpret America in boys and girls and men and women that can read and write. We want to interpret America in better housing conditions and decent wages, in hours that will allow a father to know his own family. That is Americanization in the concrete-reduced to practical terms. That is the spirit of the Declaration of Independence put into terms that are social and economic."
As has already been stated, a number of factors have combined to cause the foreign born in many instances to dwell together in colonies.
Our cities have failed in most cases to extend to these colonies the same watchful care regarding health and safety that has been given to the better portions of our communities. The result has been to make these colonies synonymous with housing evils, overcrowding, and filth. It may be stated as a fact that the conditions of life in which immigrants have been thrust in our American cities are far below the standards in health and decency to which the majority of them have been accustomed in their own countries.
1 John J. Mahoney and Charles M. Herlihy, in “ First Steps in Americanization." ? Franklin K. Lane.