Bennett by 1935 decided to adopt some of American President’s Franklin D. Roosevelt’s “New Deal” policies of 193. The New Deal (blueprints for the future) in the United States of America extended the influence of the federal government into the whole economic life of the country. New laws were passed that relieved the immediate distress of the depression as well as the roots and causes of the Depression. This is the beginning of the Welfare State.

Bennett in 1935 passes a set of far reaching reforms.

  • Minimum wage legislation
  • 40 hour work week
  • Weekly day of rest
  • Unemployment insurance.
  • Social security laws
  • Central planning board called the National Economic Council

What happened to Bennett?

Canadians like the “New Deal” but wanted to know why Bennett waited for things to get so bad. It was too much of a coincidence that this new last-minute plan coincided with the election of 1935. Bennett was defeated by Mackenzie King and the Liberals. King was elected back into office with the greatest majority his government ever had.


Co-operative Commonwealth Federation (CCF)

The CCF was founded in Calgary in 1932. Thirty came from idea for this new party came from labour leaders and advocates, such as J.S Woodsworth, that continued to sit in Parliament since the days of the Winnipeg strike and a handful of Progressives, including Agnes Macphail, who  refused to join and of the old political parties. This party believed that society should be based on co-operation instead of competition and that a federation of farms, labour and other organizations representing “exploited people” should be formed to bring this about. At the big convention of 1935, in Regina, J.S Woodsworth was elected as the national leader and the party modeled their platform on the British labour party’s idea of gradual socialism.

Platform of C.C.F

  • Mixed economy-nationalized and private industry
  • Social welfare programs- pensions. Health and welfare, baby bonus, unemployment insurance, and compensation for injured workers (disability pensions)


  • To eliminate the dangers of future depression
  • To place more purchasing power in the hands of the people.
  • To raise general standards of living.

Effect on Canadian Politics

  • The socialist ideas of the C.C.F stimulated the old political parties to do a little more progressive thinking and helped pave the way for the Welfare State.
  • Almost all of the party’s ideas have been adopted in Canada.
  • By 1961 the C.C.F evolved into the new Democratic Party (NDP)- changed federal politic from a two party contest to a three party

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