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Word Count: 1,202
The first phase of industrialization during 1891 and 1911 attracted a steady supply of rural Canadians to the cities Although industrialization did provide thousands of jobs it did not create an egalitarian society Instead a new social class was spawned the working poor These families faced inequities in the labour force weak government protection and social discrimination Industrialization had caused Canadian cities to double which brought wealth to the society but that wealth was not shared Finlay J L and Sprague D N 296 Disadvantaged by low wages the poor unlike the middle class had no opportunity to progress so the beliefs of these rural Canadians were tested as shown For generations they made their living from farming or from providing the services required by the farming community Their philosophy was that all people had the same opportunities for a lifestyle of reasonable comfort fair compensation for their work economic and social advancement through personal effort They lived by the belief that honest hard work and thrift would lead to success and that poverty was the just reward for laziness 296 The industrial environment did not support these convictions they became workers-for-wages and were controlled by the whims of an industry Two external forces drove the relentless threat of poverty that became a fact of life First nearly half of the population was classified as unskilled labor 296 and this over-supply of workers enabled employers to set pitifully low wages To illustrate in 1911 the father of a family of five worked a six-day week and earned 1000 However at that time according to the figures published by the Canadian Department of Labour an average family of five needed 964 per week 297 The leftover was a pittance of 36 Second wage earners were at the mercy of fickle industrial conditions that could reduce a workers hours and his expected wages could not be achieved In the late 1880s workers resisted the
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