JUNE 25, 1958
NEW YORK—I was privileged the other day to give the Sherwood Awards, which are presented by the Fund for the Republic to the TV shows judged to be the best for this year on the theme of civil rights and liberties.
A special award had been granted to "The Lady From Philadelphia." This telecast over CBS network, under the sponsorship of International Telegraph and Telephone Company, produced by Edward R. Murrow and Fred Friendly in cooperation with the State Department, was an outstanding achievement.
I was happy to be given the opportunity to join in recognition of a great woman who, through her personality and her character, made a wonderful journey for her government as a goodwill ambassador.
Since Edward R. Murrow is one of my favorite people, it was, of course, a great pleasure to see a show which he produced, together with Mr. Friendly, receive recognition.
The top award this year was divided between a series called "The Open Mind," which is produced and moderated by Richard Heffner and directed by Marshall Stone over WRCA-TV, and a project called "Let Freedom Ring" over WBZ-TV, which for 365 days in the year devoted its entire operation to the theme of freedom and justice, whatever the form of the program might be.
In addition, three $1,000 awards were given, one to "Concept: Freedom," a program of the Metropolitan Educational TV Association on WCBS-TV, another to "Migrants in Chicago" of the Outlook Series on the NBC network, and the third to "The Trophy," produced by ABC network in cooperation with the American Jewish Committee.
I am happy to say that these awards will be continued for another year in the hope of increasing the interest in civil rights and freedoms. TV has such a tremendous audience that I think it is the medium above all others through which to reach the conscience of our people.
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I was very sad to read the other day of Herbert Bayard Swope's death. He will be missed by his many friends and by the communications world, for he was one of those who understood how to communicate with the people of the country, and he helped many others to do so.
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My correspondent who writes me periodically about nondiscrimination in employment among persons over 35 years old tells me that there are two bills, S 1073 and S 3433, which were introduced "to prohibit unjust discrimination in employment because of age" and "to eliminate discriminatory employment practices on account of age by contractors and sub-contractors in the performance of contracts with the U.S. and the District of Columbia."
She says no action has been taken on these bills. They do not cover firms employing only 10 people but begin their coverage when there are 50 employees and forbid discrimination after the age of 45.
She insists that firms with fewer employees should be covered and the age should be changed to 35 because many women have to hide their age when looking for a job. I hope some action may be taken on these bills at the present session of Congress.