150.071 Control/182

The Acting Secretary of State to the Secretary of Labor (Perkins)

Madam: The receipt is acknowledged of Mr. Shaughnessy’s13 letter of May 26, 1934,14 addressed to Mr. Simmons,15 of this Department, with its enclosure, in which the request was made for an expression of this Department’s opinion concerning a proposed seamen’s bill embodying the changes suggested at a conference held May 22nd between representatives of the Departments of State, Commerce and Labor.

Before commenting on the proposed bill enclosed in Mr. Shaughnessy’s letter, which is understood to be a substitute for S. 868 and similar bills previously introduced, I would point out that the Department of State is in sympathy with any proper and practicable plan for the protection of wage earners in the United States and for ensuring the welfare of American seamen.

It is believed that existing legislation provides practical and adequate safeguards to protect the United States against the illegal entry into this country of mala fide seamen who may seek to remain here after deserting from vessels arriving at American seaports.

If, however, it should be deemed necessary by Congress to enact legislation of the type contemplated, the Department agrees to the proposed substitute bill, a copy of which was enclosed with your letter under reference, as preferable to S. 868 and other similar bills which have been proposed.

Very truly yours,

William Phillips
  1. Edward J. Shaughnessy, Deputy Commissioner of Immigration and Naturalization.
  2. Not printed.
  3. John F. Simmons, Chief of the Visa Division since February 12, 1934.