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Implementation of the minimum wage, establishment of labor unions, fought for the 40 hour work week, fought for minimum wage to be raised, and raised again, …
One of the actions that progressives took to help the poor is highlighting the poor living conditions and exposing corruption..
Progressives worked for a national income tax to help poor people…
Supported limits on working hours
Promoted laws against child labor
Settlement House Movement White, upper-middle class, college-educated women who wanted to make a difference in society created and worked at settlement houses, which were like community centers in inner-city, immigrant neighborhoods. They wanted to improve the lives of slum-dwellers by providing education and child care, teaching English and other basic skills, helping the immigrants get better jobs and housing, and uplifting them culturally (art & music appreciation.) Part of the mission of the settlement house workers was Americanization of immigrants to teach the immigrants WASP middle-class values. The most famous settlement house was Hull House in Chicago, led by Jane Addams. Black middle-class women ran separate settlement houses for fellow African-Americans illustrating the racial segregation of the Progressive movement.
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Housing and Sanitation Reforms Progressive reformers urged cities to pass legislation which set standards for housing (to try to eliminate the worst tenements) and such sanitation matters as garbage pick-up and sewage systems. The legislation would require the hiring of inspectors to see that these standards were met. Many of the inspectors first hired by city governments under these reforms were women, such as Jane Addams.
Beautification Campaigns Some reformers wanted to improve the urban environment by making it more pleasant and attractive. This, like the housing reforms, was based on their idea that an improved environment meant improved people. (This idea was a rejection of Social Darwinism.) Some of their reforms included parks, civic centers, and better transportation systems. Some historians argue that these were superficial reforms enacted to please the middle-class inhabitants or tourists of cities, but did not really address the dire problems of the masses who lived in the slums.
Anti-Prostitution Campaign Progressives were responsible for the Mann Act (1910), which prohibited interstate transportation of women for immoral purposes. By 1915, nearly every state had outlawed prostitution.
Woman suffrage This was the movement to secure for women the right to vote. Many different kinds of women (race, class, and ethnicity) joined the campaign to win the federal amendment, but the movement was mainly led by WASP middle and upper-class women.
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