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Welfare is a public assistance program that provides at least a minimum amount of economic security to people whose incomes are insufficient to maintain an adequate standard of living These programs generally include such benefits as financial aid to individuals subsidized medical care and stamps that are used to purchase food The modern US welfare system dates back to the Great Depression of the 1930s During the worst parts of the Depression about one-fourth of the labor force was without work More than two-thirds of all households would have been considered poor by todays standards With a majority of the capable adult population experiencing severe financial misfortune many Americans turned to the government for answers In response US President Franklin D Roosevelt led a social and economic reform movement attacking the Depression Part of his newly enacted New Deal program was the Social Security Act enacted by Congress in 1935 This act and established a number of social welfare programs each designed to provide support for different segments of the population Recently Roosevelts Social Welfare Program has become a topic of heated debate Welfare has come a long way since Roosevelt it was once a system that help those in need until they could get back on their feet now welfare has turned into a system that feeds money to a group of people that have become to lazy to find work Talk of replacing the old system with a welfare program that will emphasize putting welfare recipients to work has become very frequent More and more stated are now beginning to adopt a welfare-to-work program leaving other states to simply ponder about the idea of taking people off the system Those in favor of welfare reform argue that a welfare-to-work program will cut the amount of people on welfare causing a surplus of funds These people base their idea on the overwhelming success of those states who have already adopted such a program
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