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The National Public Affairs Committee of the YWCA of the U.S.A. is responsible for maintaining awareness of the social, political and economic issues affecting women in the United States, recommending a program of action and providing resources to the National Board of the YWCA of the U.S.A. and its local associations in support of its program. The committee's charter establishes these purposes and functions and official statements and recommendations from the committee highlight program aspects. In December of 1961 the YWCA of the U.S.A. celebrated fifty years of public affairs programs in a joint celebration with the National Council of Jewish Women. The celebration, with special guest Eleanor Roosevelt, is documented through articles and reports. In addition to the national ceremony, the YWCA of the U.S.A. local associations are encouraged to have their own celebrations over the coming year. A set of guidelines and recommendations for local associations outlines suggested content and events. Also include are the texts of speeches given at the joint celebration in December, 1961. The newsletter of the public affairs committee highlights important program aspects, explores a relevant topic of the public affairs program and offers resources for local associations. Some newsletters also include supporting documents such as handbooks and articles. One newsletter from 1963 includes a copy of Martin Luther King Jr.'s "Letter from Birmingham City Jail."
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This collection is open for use without restriction beyond the standard terms and conditions of Smith College Special Collections. However, by agreement with the YWCA of the U.S.A., microdexes known to contain financial records or personal health information (usually on job applications) were not digitized and/or not published in our online repository as part of the CLIR Digitizing Hidden Collections grant. These microdexes may still be accessed on the original microfilm, and digital files may be made available to individual researchers upon request.
Use and Reproduction
To the extent that it owns copyright, YWCA of the USA has retained copyright in its works donated to Smith College, but has has authorized Smith College Special Collections to grant permission to publish reproductions or quotations from the records on its behalf. Copyright in other items in this collection may be held by their respective creators. For reproductions of materials that are governed by fair use as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission to cite or publish is required. For those few instances beyond fair use, or which may regard materials in the collection not created by YWCA of the USA, researchers are responsible for determining who may hold materials' copyrights and obtaining approval from them. Researchers do not need anything further from Smith College Special Collections to move forward with their use.
Public affairs, Sophia Smith Collection of Women's History, MS 00324, Smith College Special Collections, Northampton, Massachusetts.