Pros And Cons Of Reforms During The Progressive Era

1422 Words 6 Pages
Reforms are improvements or amendment to an unsatisfactory action. During the Progressive Era of the United States, many reforms and acts were passed to help the country advance. Some of those acts and reforms regulated child labor, improved working conditions, and protected consumers through many exploits by Jacob Riis and Upton Sinclair.
Many children were working in factories and sweatshops, as a means to help support their families. These children would work for 9 to 12 hours daily, and get paid extremely low wages. Some would be badly injured, and even killed by machines. Factories would not take responsibility for these injuries, or even make attempts at preventing them, for that would have cost them money they did not want to lose. One
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Workers were squished into small work spaces for 12 hours a day, working away, without barely a pause or break. Many workers were injured by machines, many even killed, on a daily basis. An example is, “Let a man so much as scrape his finger pushing a truck in the pickle rooms, and he might have a sore that would put him out of the world [lead to his death]; all the joints in his fingers might be eaten by the acid, one by one.” (Doc 1). There was an immense lack of regulation that protected workers from the large dangers of working in these factories. The only form of assistance handed to workers were labor unions, which were not very successful or useful.The government did not aid these unions in working towards improvement of these conditions, so companies still had so much power over the people. Another example of the horrible working conditions is, “The public had responded instead to the disclosures about corrupt federal meat inspectors, unsanitary slaughterhouses, tubercular cattle, and the packers’ unscrupulous [unethical] business practices.” (Doc 2). To add to dangerous working conditions, workers had extremely low wages that were not worth the long hours they worked. The workers never seemed to question or complain about these low wages because of the established idea of Social Darwinism. This was the idea that the fittest and most prepared people would flourish and thrive, while the people …show more content…
During the Progressive Era of the United States, many reforms and acts were passed to help the country advance. Some of those acts and reforms regulated child labor, improved working conditions, and protected consumers through many exploits by Jacob Riis, and Upton Sinclair. Progressive reforms started an era of change and prosperity in

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