WorksProgress Administration

WorksProgress Administration

Inthe 1920s and 1930s, the US experienced adverse socio-economiceffects arising from the Great Depression. The government initiatedprograms aimed at lessening the burden on citizens as well asboosting the economy towards recovery. Through the New Deal programs,the federal administration led by President Franklin D. Rooseveltstarted recovery strategy through legislations and policies. Thegreat motivation by the government was the need to initiate aneconomy recovery plan. It is noteworthy that the Great Depression ledto the loss of jobs, financially strained citizens, low wages, andpoor economic status. New Dealers believed that socio-economicrecovery was the initial step towards addressing the currentchallenges and difficulties in the country (Tweton, 1988).

Thefederal administration created the toundertake public works projects such as bridges and schools on behalfof the government. The intention was to recruit unemployed citizensas a means to boost their financial status. WPA also employedcitizens in the fields such as media and music industry. The agencyemployed over 8.5 million citizens by the time of its dissolution in1943 (Tweton, 1988).

Actually,WPA was created to ensure that families had a source of livelihoodsas well as lessen the effects of the Great Depression. The approachwas better than public assistance as it ensured that citizens withoutskills could get skills besides the monthly pay. The president alsomade sure that the projects did not offer unnecessary competition toprivate enterprises. As such, the government put wage and pricecontrols to ensure that private companies recovered besidessupplementing the government’s economic recovery plans. New Dealinitiatives started by President Roosevelt helped in returning thecountry’s economy to normal levels. Despite the success andcontribution of WPA towards economic recovery, there emergedcriticisms with some people arguing that the projects werepolitically motivated (Tweton, 1988).


Tweton,D. J. (1988). TheNew Deal at the grass roots: Programs for the people in Otter TailCounty, Minnesota.St. Paul: Minnesota Historical Society Press.