The Labor Market Impact of State-Level Anti-Discrimination Laws, 1940-1960
By the time Congress passed the 1964 Civil Rights Act, 98 percent of non-southern blacks (40 percent of all blacks) were already covered by state-level "fair employment" laws which prohibited labor market discrimination. This paper assesses the impact of fair employment legislation on black workers' income, unemployment, labor force participation, and occupational and industrial distributions relative to whites using a difference-in-difference-in-difference framework. In general, the fair employment laws adopted in the 1940s appear to have had larger effects than those adopted in the 1950s, and the laws had relatively small effects on the labor market outcomes of black men compared to those of black women.
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