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Custom Evolution in Canada Essay

Canada underwent a major change during the twentieth century that played a big role in the transformation of the lives of the people. A concept of welfare state emerged, and it saw the state playing a major role in the control of social and economic well being of the local people. It was for the purpose of ensuring that the people benefited directly from the government funds. This was achieved through transfer of the funds to carter for services like education and healthcare services. This paper will critically discuss the stages of the evolution.

The Evolution

The evolution occurred in four major stages with each stage having aim and objectives (Russell, 1997). The four main stages include the following:

The Early Stage: 1840-1890.

This phase was triggered by the social and economic activities that were being witnessed at the time. The poverty was very widespread among the people, and the majorities were not receiving the medical attention they required. The children were also affected by this situation, and as such, they could not get quality education, and some did not receive any education at all. The situation also led to wide spread crime which saw many people being imprisoned. The jail conditions were also very poor leading to more suffering of the prisoners. The situation caught the attention of some of the upper class citizens, mainly the females. The legislators also noted the situation and decided to act. This phase was thus characterized by legislation of laws to combat the situation. Compulsory medical care was developed together with compulsory education. Most of the people who were affected by poverty also received an aid. This phase also saw the lives of the people improving and the level of poverty also being reduced. Some laws were also passed to ensure that the quality of family lives was improved. This includes the laws on marriage, use of contraceptives, and divorce (Russell, 1997).

Transitional Phase: 1891-1940

This phase was mainly characterized by reforms in the industrial sector and the family lives. The government was seeking to control the growth of the economy through legislating laws that would promote the growth of the industries. The government also passed several laws that ensured the development of the infrastructure. This was followed by the laws on capital and maintainance of industries and businesses. To achieve the aims and objectives, the government ensured that it legalized the laws concerning labor. The labor market was closely associated with the family lives. This saw the passing of laws that governed the relations between labor, family maintenance, and capital (Moscovitch, 1987).

The Interventionist Stage: 1941-1974

This phase was marked by the beginning of the World War 2. The period of the battle was characterized by the harsh economic situation for most countries in the world. However, Canada had learnt its lessons during the earlier times of hardship and bad economic situation. The government, therefore, put in place measures that ensured that Canada would still be successful even after the end of the war. This phase was thus characterized by the large scale construction, control of the prices of commodities, building materials, and also employment of females in the paid labor force. The housing project for the veterans was also commissioned at this phase (Moscovitch, 1987).

This phase also led to a lot of transformation done after the war. This was triggered by widespread pressures from the trade unions and charitable organizations. Some of the charitable organizations were no longer able to support the relief programs due to the effects of the war. The government thus established housing and aid programs for the disabled including the blind. This phase was also characterized by social reforms that saw the old people included in the pension plan. All the elderly above the age of 65 were eligible to the state pension. The Indian Act was also amended to include the indigenous people in the provincial social welfare. The Unemployment Assistance Act was also passed to counter unemployment among the people, mostly the youth. The financing of higher education was also introduced at this phase to ensure capacity building which was important for the country (Findlay, 1998).

Erosion and Future Welfare Phase: 1975-2000

The Canadian economy entered a period of decline at this phase. This was mainly to the increased expense in terms of social welfare costs. The single parents were included in a scheme to help them support their children. The higher education funds were also on the increase due to the growth of the population. The unemployment benefits were also facing a lot of challenges due to the increase in the number of the unemployed youth. Healthcare funds had also been increased; and hence, the government had to incur a lot of expenses. The number of old people was also increasing; and thus, the pension funds had to be increased too. The government had to put in place more measures to caution the citizens. However, at this phase, the government was able to put the economy back to track (Findlay, 1998).

In conclusion, the involvement of the state in the economy and the society was a significant change in Canada during the twentieth century. The Canadian welfare state evolved though four major stages which lead to the involvement of the state in offering offers housing, education, healthcare, and sustenance for its citizens. This leads to improvement of the economy and the lives of the people in Canada. It also provided benefits, like unemployment insurance and pensions, and controlled relations between labor and capital. However, the economy experienced both growth and decline.

Custom Evolution in Canada Essay

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