The Wartime Treatment Study Act (H.R. 1425/S. 564), was introduced on March 10, 2009. The Immigration Subcommittee of the House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a hearing on this bipartisan legislation for Thursday, March 19, 2009 at 12 P.M. in 2237 Rayburn House Office Building.

If passed, The Wartime Treatment Study Act would establish two fact-finding commissions, one to study the internments and restrictions imposed by the U.S. government on certain European Americans and European Latin Americans during World War II, and the other to study government policies limiting the ability of Jewish refugees to come to the United States before and during the war.

Although the U.S. government has formally studied and recognized the mistreatment of Japanese Americans during World War II, no commission has been established to study the treatment of these other groups. During the World War II years, thousands of persons of German, Italian and Eastern European ancestry living in the U.S. and Latin America were unfairly arrested, interned, detained, or relocated. Many European Americans and European Latin Americans were later deported to hostile Axis nations, some in exchange for Americans and Latin Americans held in those nations. Prior to and during World War II, the U.S. restricted the entry of Jewish refugees who were fleeing persecution or genocide and sought safety in the U.S.

The Wartime Treatment Study Act has been introduced five times. The bill was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee four times and approved by the full Senate as an amendment to the immigration bill in 2007, which later failed to pass.

Upon introduction of this bill last week, Senator Russ Feingold (D-WI) stated: “While we should be proud of our triumph in World War II, we should also come to terms with how certain people of European descent were treated by our government.”

For further information contact:
German American Internee Coalition –