Black History Moment: The Moynihan Report of 1965

by Feb 25, 2021Blog0 comments

Today’s black history moment, is a highlight about a 1965 government report that had a profound and lasting impact, towards shaping public & social policy on African American families in low-income neighborhoods.

The Moynihan Report – Key Highlights
* Published in March 1965 by Daniel Patrick Moynihan, a sociologist who served as Assistant Secretary of Labor under President Lyndon B. Johnson
* In general, aspects of the Moynihan Report include:
1) Acknowledgement of existing race discrimination despite attainment civil rights legislative victories
2) Deterioration of the nuclear family structure in low-income African American families
3) Continued expansion of welfare programs
4) Rising out-of-wedlock birthrates in low-income African American families
* Argument against the report: seen as “blaming the victim,” racially condescending by whites, heavy reliance on stereotypes about the black family & black men to explain/describe root cause(s) behind poverty in black communities
* Argument in favor of the report: report seen as vindication in regards to the current-day state of black families in low-income neighborhoods
The Moynihan Report – Significance
* Fueled ongoing debate on the proper course of action for the government to take in regards to people/families living in poverty, especially concerning African Americans
Visit the websites below and/or conduct your own research to learn more about The Moynihan Report of 1965:
The Moynihan Report (March 1965), US Department of Labor: “The Negro Family: The Case for National Action”


C-SPAN Video: “PREVIEW: 1965 ‘The Negro Family’ Labor Dept. Report on NBC’s Meet the Press”
Article: “Moynihan and the Single-Parent Family”


Moynihan Institute for Fatherhood Research and Policy


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