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The KHOU-TV Collection - News Clips, June 21 - 23, 1966
Houston Metropolitan Research Center
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  • Highlights
    Prison Farm, 06/21/66: KHOU reporter Al Bell introduces the new Harris County Prison Farm on Atascocita Road
    Hepler on School Suit, 06/23/66: KHOU reporter Mark Hepler relays updates in the federal court case of Broussard v. Houston Independent School District. Onesephor and Yvonne Broussard brought a civil rights suit against HISD on behalf of African-American students. The case took place in Judge Alan B. Hannay's courtroom. The Broussard family argued that the construction of new schools in predominately black neighborhoods perpetuated de facto segregation by preventing black and white students from integrating within schools beyond the residential perimeter. A characteristic of residential or neighborhood segregation, the creation of schools within specific neighborhoods reinforced the existing pattern of segregated schools. On July 13, Judge Hannay ruled against the plaintiffs, finding insufficient evidence that the school district acted against the Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education (1954). Although United States District Court Judge Ben C. Connally ordered HISD to integrate beginning in 1960, the transformation was slow and often ineffective. It took Houston decades to completely desegregate its public schools, and questions of de facto segregation remain. 
    Sec Wirtz, 06/25/66: Secretary of Labor W. Willard Wirtz commends recent progress made by the country in the pursuit of equal employment opportunities for minorities. He expresses confidence that the "ugly part of discrimination" is mostly gone and that no man or woman will be refused a job based on race, creed, or national origin. Wirtz served as labor secretary under Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. He worked extensively with Johnson on the War on Poverty, maximizing the employment rate and creating numerous programs aimed at expanding training and education opportunities. 
    Sec Willard Wirtz Scraps, 06/25/66: Secretary Wirtz discusses amendments made to the Fair Labor Standards Act. As Wirtz explains, the 1966 amendments included extended coverage to public schools, nursing homes, laundries, and the construction industry. The legislation also expanded minimum wage coverage to a significant number of agricultural workers for the first time. Wirtz discusses the bill's minimum wage increase proposal (which did go into effect, raising it to $1.00 an hour) and its possible effect on migrant strikers in the Rio Grande Valley. Organizers of the Starr County Strike, also known as the Farmworkers Melon Strike, demanded an increased minimum wage to $1.25, the right to collective bargaining, and humane working conditions. Wirtz concludes that there is no reason for farm workers to make miniscule wages, just as there is no reason for factory workers to make minuscule wages. He argues that the shameful conditions under which workers grow and harvest the public's food makes such food unpalatable. 
    Hepler on School Suit, 06/23/66: Footage of school campuses visited by the court as part of Broussard v. Houston Independent School District