Canadian Government's Support Toward its People During the Great Depression

Pages: 5 (1929 words) Published: October 1, 2012
How well did Canadians (Government and Citizens) Support Those Who Fell on Hard Times during the Great Depression

The depression was a dark time for most Canadians. After the war times it was great in Canada and everyone had a bit of extra wealth to spend and had a good time; There was also many new technologies that people invested their money into but most people didn’t know what was about to come next. On Black Tuesday (October 29, 1929) the stock market crashed and everything went downhill. There were a number of other reasons that the 1930’s were such hard times and the Government didn’t do it’s best to stop them. He did make relief but it didn’t live up to its potential, healthcare and living conditions were also inadequate. There were also selfish people like R.B. Bennett and Charles Miller that made the hard times worse. The Government put Canadians in work camps but the fought back by starting the On-To-Ottawa Trek. It was not easy to live in Canada in the 1930’s and Government didn’t put forth enough to help Canadians. In the depression the relief or pogey that the Canadian Government supplied was not adequate. Pogey only included vouchers for things like food and relief (Fielding) and many necessities were left out. It couldn’t be used for supplies that the people really needed like building supplies to keep their houses from getting shabby and falling apart, clothes and rat poisons. This led to major health hazards. Next, relief ranged from $14 a month in Halifax to $60 in Calgary (Fielding). Back in that time period families commonly had many children even sometimes 11 (Azzopardi) and grandparents lived with them also. This was not enough for a family to live off for a month. Another flaw in the relief system is that no matter how big your family is and if you’re struggling a little bit or a lot it was a fixed amount everyone would get. Finally, relief was hard to get and you had to live in the same place for from 6 months to a year in order to be able to get it (Patton). During the depression many people moved around in order to find work. This left them with literally nothing. Relief was also hard to get for people you live far away from a city. Relief had the right idea but it never became as helpful as the people needed it to be. In the time period of the 1930’s healthcare was inadequate. For starters hospitals were very expensive and most people couldn’t afford them (Patton). The income was very low and this left people unable to get doctors so they had to treat themselves at home. For example in the ‘Stork Derby’ Mrs. Benaggio was forced to have her kids at home without a nurse and wasn’t even able to get some of them registered (Azzopardi). In addition, in spring of 1931 there was 1 doctor serving 21,000 people in Winnipeg, Manitoba (Patton). This goes to show that there wasn’t enough medical staff in Canada and because many people couldn’t afford to put to go to college there weren’t many new doctors either. This sometimes led to death like in ‘Stork Derby’ when the Cannellies had to all the way to find a nurse and she didn’t make it in time to save the babies life (Azzopardi). Lastly the health care wasn’t very advanced because they did not have modern technologies and medicines. Also there wasn’t a lot of funding to research medicine during the depression. In short healthcare was inadequate due to the lack of funding and staff and its high cost. During the depression nature created horrible living conditions which the Canadian Government didn’t fight against. First of all in Saskatchewan and surrounding provinces a major drought went on from 1928-1937 which is right through the worst of the depression (Patton). It affected 7.3 million hectares or 1/3 of Canada’s arable land (Patton). This made it virtually impossible for farmers to make a living from farming crops or raising animals. The drought also made it very dry, resourceless and hot. After that, in 1931 high winds swept through the...
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