Roosevelt's Advocacy of Compulsory Unemployment Compensation
Unemployment Benefit Plans in State Legislatures
The first American statute providing for compulsory establishment of unemployment reserve funds by industry was enacted in Wisconsin in January, 1932. In mid-February an interstate commission representing the governors of New York, Ohio, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Connecticut submitted a report favoring a plan of compulsory unemployment compensation similar to that adopted in Wisconsin. President-elect Roosevelt endorsed the report and commended its proposals to the New York legislature. A bill introduced to carry them into effect in that state, however, failed to receive action at the 1932 session. Roosevelt reaffirmed his support of compulsory unemployment compensation under state laws, as advocated by the Democratic national platform, in a radio speech from Albany on ...