2015 ACSP Conference
The sixties brought about civil rights movements globally and especially here in the United States. As freedom riders made their journey across the south in 1961 protesting the use of segregation in public transportation, urban planning was progressing by introducing zoning for the first time in the state of Hawaii. The year of 1964 brought about the enactment of the civil rights act that banned discrimination based on "race, color, religion, sex or national origin" in employment practices and public accommodations. 1964 was also the year that economic development was brought into the spotlight by President Lyndon Johnson declaring war on poverty. The civil rights movement was hit hard in 1968 due to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Memphis, Tennessee. Despite this tragedy, regional planning was evolving and the Intergovernmental Relations Act of 1968 was passed, requiring state and sub-state regional clearinghouses to review and comment on federally assisted projects to facilitate coordination among the three levels of government.
Starting in the 1960s, the beginning of the women's rights movement resurged forward after being passive during the 1940s and 1950s. The civil rights protests spurred the women of the 1960s to renew the push for equal rights for women as well as minorities in educational and employment fields. Equality in politics, both in the United States and internationally, were also on the agenda for women's rights. During this time of women's rights movements, Jane Jacobs made her mark in planning by introducing "The Death and Life of Great American Cities" into the planning profession.
The world became increasingly conscious about the health of the environment during this time in history. In 1960, the first clean water act was passed by Congress as well as the first implementation of a Public Health Service study on air pollution from cars. The end of the sixties brought one of environmental health's most influential accomplishments, the passing of the National Environmental Policy Act by Congress.
The 1960s will forever be known as a time of progress. Fifty years later we will look back to assess the progress we have made from the groundwork established in the 60s as we plan for the development that will take place in the next fifty years.