Progressive Movement

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The Progressive Movement, which took place in the late 19th and early 20th century, started as social reform and morphed into a political platform. Religious groups, reporters and political activists all rallied around causes that they believed effected people who were weaker than those in power. Progressives wanted to improve social welfare and reform corrupt corporate and government practices. On the local, state, and federal level; progressivism provided the stage for public advocacy. The Progressive Movement is responsible for many of the reforms that affect our health, safety, and voice in the government.
Sparked by the Progressive Movement, the Federal Government passed legislation to protect the health and well-being of American citizens. Upton Sinclair’s book, The Jungle which described the meat industry as disease-ridden and corrupt caught the attention of President Roosevelt. An investigation revealed that bribery, unsanitary conditions and contaminated food were commonplace. Individual states had enacted laws regulating food purity and safety by 1900, however, …show more content…

There was a commitment to make changes at the local level to give the people a voice and better living conditions. Making municipal governments more efficient and eliminating political corruption was their goal. They argued against the strong mayor/weak council system and wanted it replaced with a strong council which would more adequately represent the people. By implementing the City Commissioner Plan and the City Manager Plan, experts ran various departments in cities and reported directly to the council. By sharing oversight across multiple council members, the mayor did not have all the power. Improvements which made living safer and healthier included expanding police and firefighting forces as well as sanitation systems which implemented sewers for waste

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