Joint Memorandum on Recent Decision Dissolving the I.W.O. in New York State
- Title (English):
- Joint Memorandum on Recent Decision Dissolving the I.W.O. in New York State
- International Workers’ Order (IWO) and Jewish People's Fraternal Order (JPFO)
- Cold War
Black Jewish Relations
- Forster, Arnold
Lukas, Edwin J. (Edwin Jay), 1902-1973
- CRC Offices
AJC Area Offices
ADL Regional Offices
- American Jewish Committee; B'nai B'rith. Anti-defamation League
- New York, New York, United States
Chicago, Cook, Illinois, United States
- ID Number:
- File Name:
- Address (creator):
- 386 Fourth Avenue, New York 16, New York; 327 North La Salle Street, Chicago, Illinois; 212 Fifth Avenue, New York 10, New York
- Bx. 42 ff3 [pencilled in]; on page 4, the word "Justice" is circled.
- Work Type:
political ideologies and attitudes
courts (judicial bodies)
- Postwar Jewish Unity
Postwar Order and Social Contract
Postwar Jewish Culture- U.S.
Cold War- Red Scare, Jewish Community
Legal Matters- IWO Legal Issues
Communist Party, USA
Fraternal Orders- Lodges, Activities
IWO JPFO Organizational History
Black Jewish Relations- African Americans
Trial and Testimony
- 6 pages. Joint Memorandum regarding the analysis of the recent decision dissolving I.W.O. in New York State. "On June 25, 1951 Justice Henry Clay Greenberg of the New York Supreme Court ordered the dissolution and liquidation of the International Workers Order on the basis of a petition brought by the State Department of Insurance. In his 49-page decision, Justice Greenberg sustained the view of the State Superintendent of Insurance that the I.W.O. had violated the provisions of its Charter, and was conducting an insurance operation that is 'financially hazardous to its policyholders, to its creditors, and to the public'. The I.W.O., a fraternal benefit society, which writes life, accident and health insurance, is comprised of about 1,600 individual lodges, located throughout the United States, has a membership of about 162,000 and has over $6,000,000 in assets. By December, 1949, it had issued insurance amounting to $110,000,000 and had paid out, up to that time, more than $13,000,000 in benefits. The Court acknowledged it as being in sound financial condition." (1) The memo analyzes the evidence that the I.W.O. was a "communist front." Memo states that the crux of the matter is whether under New York State insurance law Section 511 (e) that the IWO is "hazardous to its policyholders." (2). "The I.W.O. urged that the Court adhere to the legislative, administrative and judicial history oi the law, and refuse to use the word "hazardous" in this wholly unwarranted manner. They urged that no dissolution could be ordered while they were in a solvent and sound financial state." (3) "On the law: Critics point out that the I.W.O. is being dissolved because it is deemed to be a political "hazard" to its policyholders, creditors, and to the general public. Yet, the dissolution is being ordered under a statute which, it is recognized on both sides, was never intended to be used in this manner. ... Justice Greenberg's decision runs counter to all previously decided insurance law... to dissolve it is also to destroy America*s most cherished doctrines of due process of law, for the very essence of law is that it be applied equally to all." (6) Memo highlights the financial impact on particular classes of existing policyholders, most especially those who are unlikely to be reinsured: the aged, the disabled, and Negro members who would now face discriminatory rates.
- The Jewish People’s Fraternal Order was the largest ‘national’ section of the International Workers Order (IWO) which focused on cultural awareness and celebration, mutual support especially in health insurance coverage, and anti-fascist activities. The IWO also gave particular emphasis to supporting the rights and interests of African Americans. Documents include language and representations which comprise the historical record and should not be interpreted to mean that Cornell University or its staff endorse or approve of negative representations or stereotypes presented.
- Cite As:
- International Workers Order (IWO) Records #5276. Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Cornell University Library.
- Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Martin P. Catherwood Library, Cornell University
- Archival Collection:
- International Workers Order (IWO) Records, 1915-2002 (KCL05276)
- The copyright status and copyright owners of most of the images in the International Workers Order (IWO) Records Collection (Kheel Center #5276) are unknown. This material was digitized from physical holdings by Cornell University Library in 2016, with funding from an Arts and Sciences Grant to Jonathan Boyarin. Documents include language and representations which comprise the historical record and should not be interpreted to mean that Cornell University or its staff endorse or approve of negative representations or stereotypes presented. Cornell is providing access to the materials as a digital aggregate under an assertion of fair use for non-commercial educational use. The written permission of any copyright and other rights holders is required for distribution, reproduction, or other use that extends beyond what is authorized by fair use and other statutory exemptions. Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item and securing any necessary permissions ultimately rests with persons desiring to use the item. Cornell would like to learn more about items in the collection and to hear from individuals or institutions that have any additional information as to rights holders. Please contact the Kheel Center at firstname.lastname@example.org