Roosevelt signed The Social Security Act in 1935 hoping that it would keep the elderly from being impoverished. He said "we can never insure one hundred percent of the population against one hundred percent of the hazards and vicissitudes of life." ("FDR signs Social Security Act"). Roosevelt addressed the worries young people had about job security and ensured that through this act they would have a guaranteed plan after retirement. When the law was created it was initially for old-age citizens and their families, but the law was amended in 1956 to also provide disability benefits. The Social Security Act provides welfare for the elderly, the disabled, underprivileged children, and unemployment compensation. The act also provides for blind or handicapped people and also to people of poor health conditions. The law was created by congress to help raise revenue. .
The Great Depression started soon after the crash of the stock market in October 1929. This was the longest economic downturn in history (The Great Depression). Unlike in the roaring twenties where people overspent, the 1930's were the complete opposite. People had to stop spending and investing which caused unemployment that forced companies to lay off workers. The banks started to fail and people were losing their money, for some it was their whole life savings. A number of foreclosures and repossessions took place because, due to the fact people were losing their jobs, homeowners could no longer pay their mortgages. Hardworking people were living in poverty and many Americans felt they deserved compensation. The Social Security Act started with Dr. Francis E. Townsend (Our Documents). He said that Americans over sixty should not have to work and get a check from the federal government (Our Documents). He had millions of supporters which made president Roosevelt sign The Social Security Act to help with getting Americans back to work and help the people that could not work, or that were retired, a safety net to fall back on.