It is a high privilege once more to appeal to the men, women and children of America for support of another year's Mobilization for Human Needs. I can properly congratulate and thank the country for their splendid response to the appeal for the care of the needy in the years of deep depression from which we are happily and rapidly emerging.
Since I spoke to you at this time last year, in behalf of this great national undertaking, much good has been accomplished, both through private charity of all kinds and through generous assistance by Federal, State and local Government authorities.
During the past year the Congress and the Administration have been making provisions for the employment of approximately three and a half million unemployed persons in bona fide jobs, and the coming month will see the great majority of these people at work in the several States.
The Congress has also enacted, and I have signed, the great Social Security Act which establishes for the future the framework for unemployment insurance, for old-age assistance and for aid to dependent children. The full force and effect of the Social Security law cannot, of course, become operative until several years have elapsed, nor will this law in any sense replace the proper and legitimate fields now covered by private contributions to private charities.
I can, however, bring you good news this evening. The results of the September employment survey have just come to me from the Secretary of Labor. During the month of September, 350,000 men and women were returned to private employment in the reporting industries of the Nation, and the money in the weekly pay envelopes of these industries was $12,000,000 greater than their weekly pay envelopes in the previous month of August. This means that the workers in these reporting industries had $12,000,000 more each week to spend for the necessities of life. Furthermore, these latest and continued gains mean that nearly 5,000,000 men and women have found employment in the reporting private industries since the low point of the depression in March, 1933, and during this same period there has been an increase of over $104,000,000 per week in the payrolls of these industries.
The September gain is the largest for any single month in the past year and a half. It brings back employment in these industries to the level of November, 1930, and it brings the payrolls back to the level of May, 1931.
Recently I expressed the hope that private industry would strain every nerve to increase their payrolls, increase the number of those whom they employed, and thus take from the Federal Government and their local governments a great share of the burden of relief. The figures which I have cited lead me to a greater confidence that private industry is living up to my hope. We seem to be taking up the slack.
Even those industries which were long backward in showing signs of recovery are putting their best foot forward. The so-called heavy industries, for example, show encouraging signs of improvement. Employment in this so-called durable goods group is now 62 percent higher than it was in the spring of 1933; their weekly payrolls are 139 percent greater; and this represents a net increase in employment of 1,185,000 men and women, and a rise of over $40,000,000 in weekly payrolls.
I cite all of these figures because they relate to that kind of employment for which the Government has definite statistics. They do not apply to the man ...
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