R. B. Bennett's Relief Camps During The Great Depression In Canada

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The roaring twenties and the dirty thirties were an extremely versatile period for Canada based on economy. Many turning points during this period helped develop Canada for example the relief camps. When the Great Depression began, many migrant workers lost their jobs and traveled across the country (‘riding the rods’) leaving their family because of the financial stress to find work. Many people viewed these unemployed men as dangerous people to the peace and safety of their communities. Due to this, Prime Minister R.B. Bennett developed a solution. He came up with relief camps for the 70,000 transients for single, and homeless men roaming the country for work. To move them away from towns and cities, and Canadian citizens, the federal government…show more content…
Many men became stressed and angry and they rebelled against life in the relief camps which gave them no hope for the future. Overtime, conditions in these reliefs got worse and worse. It was overcrowded and not a pleasant place to live in. In April 1935, 1500 men from the British Columbia relief camps went on strike and gathered together in the city of Vancouver. In the summer of 1935, the relief camp workers organized the 'On to Ottawa Trek ' to demand work with wages. Thousands of young men from British Columbia climbed onto railway boxes and headed east. Bennett showed no empathy and demanded the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to turn them back. They were stopped in Regina and warned. This launched protests across the country, which turned into a street riot in Regina known as the Regina Riot. On July 1, 1935, the Regina Riot broke out. The Regina Riot was the worst riot in Canada during the Great Depression. A year later, all the “unpopular” relief camps were shut down. Fortunately, some of the men found remained in the camps because they had nowhere else to go. A strike leader was permitted to carry on to Ottawa to meet with the PM. However this made no difference to

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