Last updated on: 1/30/2017 | Author:

1965 – Hart-Celler Immigration and Nationality Act Abolishes Immigration Criteria Based on Nation of Origin and Race

“In 1965, the United States passed the landmark Hart-Celler [Immigration and Nationality] Act, abolishing nation-of-origin restrictions. Effective June 30, 1968, immigration and naturalization exclusion on the basis of race, sex, or nationality was prohibited. Under the Hart-Celler Act, new immigration criteria was based on kinship ties, refugee status, and ‘needed skills.’ Between 1820 and 1960, 34.5 million Europeans immigrated to the U.S., while only one million Asians—mostly Chinese and Japanese—immigrated. An unintended, unanticipated, and highly evident effect of Hart-Celler was the burgeoning of Asian immigration. Between 1870-1965, a total of 16,013 Indians immigrated to the United States. In the first decade following the passage of the 1965 Hart-Celler Act, 96,735 Indians immigrated. For the most part, these new Indian immigrants entered under the needed skills preference of the 1965 law.”