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But instead we find the money wasted.
Mrs. HERLIHY. Although my official connection with the antipoverty program ended at this time, my connection with WYEAC resumed later in 1967 and in 1968 through the fact that the Great Wilmington Development Council, of which I am a member of the board of directors, assumed temporary financing of WYEAC after its Federal funds were expended. A further grant of Federal funds to WYEAC was to be contingent on having Greater Wilmington Development Council work out an acceptable plan.
The CHAIRMAN. By that time they still had worked out nothing that was tangible and constructive or acceptable?
Mrs. HERLIHY. They still had no program, Senator.
Mrs. HERLIHY. This was a period from November and December 1967, up through February and March of 1968. The Greater Wilmington Development Council had appointed an ad hoc committee to study WYEAC on whether they should take on permanent financing of WYEAC.
The CHAIRMAN. When did they take over to make this study?
Mrs. HERLIHY. The announcement that the Federal funds were made available to WYEAC was in March 1968.
The CHAIRMAN. That was money for a year?
Mrs. HERLIHY. The Greater Wilmington Development Council took over temporary financing, I believe in November 1967. Yet the Federal money was to be contingent on whether GWDC came up with an acceptable plan. But they announced that the Federal money was granted in March.
Here is a copy of the newspaper clipping.
The CHAIRMAN. In other words, your organization was working to
$100,000 FOR WYEAC CENTERS OK'D
A $100,000 antipoverty grant to help finance four Wilmington Youth Emergency Action centers has been approved by the U.S. Office of Economic Opportunity.
The money was granted to Community Action of Greater Wilmington, which administers the local antipoverty program.
George N. Brown, director of WYEAC, said the money will help run a program of "out-reach, referral and follow-up" for youth from low-income families.
Victor Grimes, associate director of administration and finance of Community Action, said local contributions to the program total about $245,000. About $70,000 of the total is “in kind" contributions such as building space and programs by such organizations as the YMCA and YWCA. More than $170,000 of the local contribution is in cash, he said.
WYEAC employs about 50 street youths in positions ranging from youth or ganizer to youth program aide. The staff members attempt to meet needs of south and young adults of the street, a group they feel is largely untouched by otber social service agencies.
The Greater Wilmington Development Council, Inc., which has been providing funds for WYEAC on a temporary basis, has been asked by the YMCA to consider funding the program on a permanent basis, according to Allan C. Rusten, GWDC associate executive director.
He said a special committee has been reviewing the possibility of providing some of the $170,000 in local cash contributions that are being sought.
The CHAIRMAN. And before you were able to do that or submit one, the Federal funds were granted anyway?
Mrs. HERLIHY. That is right.
The board of directors of GWDC did not formally approve funding WYEAC until April 1968.
The CHAIRMAN. But plans had already been approved ?
Mrs. HERLIHY. But the Federal money had been made available; yes. Whether that was used or not I don't know, but they made the announcement in March before GWDC had voted on it.
The CHAIRMAN. Very well.
Mrs. HERLIHY. It is my understanding that the first experience GWDC had with WYEAČ was in July 1967. On Saturday, July 29, at the height of the civil disorders in Wilmington, Mr. James Grady, president of the Greater Wilmington Development Council, was requested on very short notice to attend a meeting at 1300 Broom Street at 9 p.m. to discuss the needs of WYEAC. The newspapers reported on July 31 that Mr. Grady had pledged $16,000 to WYEAC. To the best of my information and belief Mr. Grady made this pledge, not from conviction that the WYEAC program was a good one, but from a sense of pressure, using this means as a way of dealing with a situation in which he felt threatened.
The CHAIRMAN. In other words, he had been intimidated or threatened or forced ?
Mrs. HERLIHY. I believe he felt he had been pressured into this.
The CHAIRMAN. In other words, the decision did not represent his best judgment or his voluntary decision?
Mrs. HERLIHY. No. That is my belief and understanding, that he did this because of the type of meeting it was.
The CHAIRMAN. I am very sorry, that signals the convening of the Senate. We have a vote over there in just a little while. I am going to recess now and come back at 2 o'clock.
I will try to be here promptly so that we can move along. I will announce now that at 4 o'clock I will have to recess the committee unless I can get some other Senator here to proceed with the hearing because at that time I have to hold an appropriations hearing on the supplemental appropriation bill.
Again, that gives you some illustration of how in the closing days we are rushing under pressure to do our work here and carry on our duties and try to get through.
Thank you very much. If you will be back at 2 oclock.
(Whereupon, at 12 noon, the subcommittee recessed to reconvene at 2 o'clock the same day.)
The subcommittee reconvened at 2 p.m., Senator John L. McClellan (chairman of the subcommittee) presiding.
Members of the subcommittee present at time of convening: Senator
The CHAIRMAN. The hearing will come to order.
TESTIMONY OF MRS. THOMAS (PEARL G.) HERLIHY, JR.-Resumed
The CHAIRMAN. The witness may proceed.
Mrs. HERLIHY. Senator McClellan, I believe I was speaking about GWDC's involvement with WYEAC and pointed out Mr. James Grady had pledged them $16,000 at the height of the disturbance in 1967.
Since January 1968, I have expressed my opposition to the funding of WYEAC to the members of the board of directors of the Greater Wilmington Development Council and to OEO in Washington through Mr. Edward S. Cogan, counsel in the mid-Atlantic regional office.
The CHAIRMAN. He is counsel for OEO?
I suggested to the chairman of the Greater Wilmington Development Council's ad hoc committee to study the program and financing of WYEAC that the members of the Greater Wilmington Development Council should give these men jobs. He rejected this idea emphatically. He said they couldn't do that.
The CHAIRMAN. Wait a minute now.
Mrs. HERLIHY. He rejected this. He said we couldn't do that. The members of the Greater Development Council couldn't give these men jobs.
The CHAIRMAN. Why did he say they couldn't do that?
Mrs. HERLIHY. He went on to say that the people in WYEAC had no skills. I pointed out that they could drive cars. One of them was a trained telephone switchboard operator, and that some of them had held jobs. But he rejected this idea as well.
The CHAIRMAN. Who rejected this? Whom are you talking about?
Mrs. HERLIHY. Mr. Edward Goett, who was chairman of GWDC's ad hoc committee to study the program and financing of WYEAC.
Mr. ADLERMAN. With what corporation is he connected ?
The CHAIRMAN. He didn't want them to have jobs; is that what you are saying?
Mrs. HERLIHY. I suggested that the people in the Greater Wilmington Development Council who represented industry and business in Delaware should give these men jobs. One of the ways to help these men would be to give them jobs and he said we couldn't do that.
The CHAIRMAN. I don't understand.
If there were jobs available, jobs that could have been made avail. able to them, why would they prefer to have them on a Government program? I don't understand this.
Mrs. HERLIHY. I do not understand it either, Senator. There were other ways of dealing with this group. I made a number of suggestions in the course of this period.
The CHAIRMAN. All right, proceed. Mrs. HERLIHY. At this time I would like to reaffirm my opposition to WYEAC for the following reasons:
One of the stated purposes of WYEAC is to curtail gang fighting and reduce gang friction.
The CHAIRMAN. One of the avowed purposes or declared purposes for establishing it, to begin with?
Mrs. HERLIHY. Yes.
The fact is that since WYEAC has been getting funds there has been a rise in the number of identifiable gang groups and in general the relationship between these gangs and WYEAC is one of mutual distrust.
WYEAC has the money, the others do not.
The CHAIRMAN. You mean the gangs that didn't get in on it were unhappy?
Mrs. HERLIHY. That is right.
Mrs. HERLIHY. Well, they had the money and they felt they were the only ones who could speak for the black youth of Wilmington.
The CHAIRMAN. Did they have dissension among themselves, each one trying to get a higher job and more pay?
Mrs. HERLIHY. Actually the dissension is within WYEAC. There are factions within WYEAC that are fighting with each other. We still have gang fighting in Wilmington. The whole thing has become a power struggle. We had the formation of a new gang which went out
This kind of thing I believe has been generated by the fact that one gang, which was made up of members of some of these other gangs, got money and substantial money. They are making substantial salaries.
The CHAIRMAN. And for doing nothing really?
The CHAIRMAN. So the other gang leaders and the other gang members decided they ought to have money, too.
Mrs. HERLIHY. That is right. They resented the one gang.
The CHAIRMAN. Did they feel they were being discriminated against by the taxpayers or by OEO?
Mrs. HERLIHY. I don't know whom they blamed for not getting money. I know that they did feel that WYEAC was the group with the money and they wanted in on it, too.
The CHAIRMAN. They were unhappy because they were not being fed a little pie, too.
All right, proceed.
Mrs. HERLIHY. This gang struggle has still been going on, this power struggle, and while some of this may have occurred if WYEAC had never existed, the ability of WYEAC to curtail gang friction has not been demonstrated.
In the last 15 months the situation has actually worsened, not gotten better.
The CHAIRMAN. Were you in a position to know that? I am trying to ascertain whether you are making that statement from a kind of abstract observation or were you in a position to know by reason of the work you do and the organization that you serve? Do you make the contacts where you come into close observation actually of what has transpired and what the consequences are of this program?
Mrs. HERLIHY. I think it is a matter of public record. For instance, a new group, as I understand it, a new group came into existence called Blackie Black.
The CHAIRMAN. Called what?
Mrs. HERLIHY. I believe it has been organized since that time in a section where WYEAC was operating.
The CHAIRMAN. Has this become a rival gang to WYEAC?
Mrs. HERLIHY. This is the gang that wanted money and was trying to get funds from various people in town. There has been a group within the WYEAC organization, itself, that has been a very militant group, as I have been given to understand. There has been fighting, there is a power struggle going on within the WYEAC organization, itself.
Mr. ADLERMAN. Is that the South Street Center?
Mrs. HERLIHY. Yes. Then I also understand and, of course, the newspapers have reported, for instance, that two gangs fought about 4 or 5 months ago and a young man was stabbed and eventually died in that gang fight.
The CHAIRMAN. Was that a gang fight?
The CHAIRMAN. I am sure the police will have records and they can probably substantiate what you are testifying to. But you are testify, ing as a citizen and as one associated with certain organizations and having worked there which gave you a chance to observe some of these things.
Mrs. HERLIHY. That is right. I am a close reader of the newspaper clippings and I have most of this in newspaper clippings, in the form of newspaper clippings.
The CHAIRMAN. So if the newspaper reported the facts, you are relating the facts!
Mrs. HERLIHY. Yes.
Mrs. HERLIHY. WYEAC was funded for 3 months in 1967 on the premise that this period would be one in which staff would be recruited and a program developed. As previously stated WYEAC hired