What happened during the On-to-Ottawa Trek?

What happened during the On-to-Ottawa Trek?

A defining event of the Great Depression, the On-to-Ottawa Trek has become a poignant symbol of working class protest. In 1935, over a thousand angry unemployed men left federal relief camps in British Columbia and boarded boxcars to take their demand for work and wages directly to Ottawa.

What were relief camps in Canada?

Starting in 1933, the federal government set up labour camps in Northern Ontario for single, unemployed, homeless Canadian males. The camps were also known as unemployment relief camps. The men were housed, fed, clothed, received basic medical care, and given twenty cents per day for discretionary spending.

What happened at the Regina Riot?

But they were stopped in Regina, where the strike leaders were arrested, resulting in the violent Regina Riot on 1 July 1935. In April 1935, about 1,500 residents of federal Unemployment Relief Camps in British Columbia went on strike….On to Ottawa Trek and Regina Riot.

Published Online February 7, 2006
Last Edited April 26, 2021

What were the major causes giving rise to the trek?

The On-to-Ottawa Trek was a result of the unrest of unemployed single men in federal relief camps. Federal relief camps were brought in under Prime Minister R. B. Bennett’s government as a result of the Great Depression. The Great Depression crippled the Canadian economy and left one in nine citizens on relief.

What is a relief camp 1930?

McNaughton proposed the idea of relief camps to provide men with work to fill their days, food, clothing, medical attention, and some compensation to ease tensions. McNaughton’s relief camps were expected to provide the basic necessities for single men in return for manual labour.

What caused the On to Ottawa Trek?

The On-to-Ottawa Trek was a mass protest movement in Canada in 1935 sparked by unrest among unemployed single men in federal relief camps principally in Western Canada. Federal relief camps were brought in under Prime Minister R. B. Bennett’s government as a result of the Great Depression.

When were relief camps established in Canada?

In October of 1932 the first federal relief camps opened in Canada. In November of 1932 camps started in eastern Canada and immediately housed over 2000 men.

What did RB Bennett do?

Richard Bedford Bennett, 1st Viscount Bennett, PC, KC (July 3, 1870 – June 26, 1947), was a Canadian lawyer, businessman, and politician who served as the 11th prime minister of Canada from 1930 to 1935. He led the Conservative Party from 1927 to 1938.

What were the main complaints of relief camp workers?

Grievances about the camp system were numerous, from the poor quality food, the lack of leisure facilities (bathrooms and showers), and that the men were only paid twenty cents per day. Complaints came from both internal and external sources.

Why did government set up relief camps?

What did William Lyon Mackenzie King do?

King’s term as minister of labour was marked by two significant achievements. He led the passage of the Industrial Disputes Investigation Act and the Combines Investigation Act, which he had shaped during his civil and parliamentary service.

What did James Woodsworth do?

James Shaver Woodsworth (July 29, 1874 – March 21, 1942) was a pre–First World War pioneer of the Canadian Social Gospel, a Christian religious movement with social democratic values and links to organized labour.