Politics -
Having experienced the injustices of internment, resettlers worked actively to protect their civil rights, attain citizenship privileges for the Issei, and eventually achieve redress for losses suffered during the war. The Japanese American Citizens League (JACL), founded in 1929 to promote civil liberties and civil rights for Japanese Americans, established a Midwest Regional Office in Chicago under the direction of Dr. Thomas Yatabe, in 1943. Working with the national organization, the office worked locally to correct legislated inequalities and later, to obtain redress for internment. With strong support from the Japanese American community, JACL gained naturalization rights for Japanese immigrants in 1952, with the passage of the Walter-McCarran Act; and redress came, when President Ronald Reagan signed the Civil Rights Act of 1988 providing a presidential apology and a symbolic payment to surviving former internees.

Today the JACL with its Chicago Chapter and Midwest District Council are committed to protecting the rights of all segments of the Asian Pacific American community.

D_Burns — Last modified Mar 30 2011 7:55 p.m.

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