The major problem with which this book is concerned is the development of a universal, comprehensive, and co-ordinated system of social security for the entire population of the nation, so designed that it will preserve the liberties of the American way of life. One of the principal elements in respect to this problem is, What shall be done regarding the more than 8 million gainful workers on the farms of the country and those dependent upon them? In 1940 the rural farm population numbered over 30 millions and constituted 22.9 per cent of the total population of the country.1 The occupations of the more than 8 million workers on the farms in 1940 were as follows in thousands:2

Farmers and farm managers:
Farmers (owners and tenants) 5,107
Farm managers 37 5,144
Farm laborers and foremen:
Farm laborers (wage workers) and foremen 1,925
Farm foremen 24
Farm laborers 1,900
Farm laborers (unpaid family workers) 1,165
Total 8,234

In the preceding chapters it has been noted that farmers and agricultural laborers in general are not covered in the existing social insurance systems. If they or their dependents are in need, they must rely on the public assistance programs, namely the federal-state co-operative plans for old-age assistance, aid to dependent children, and aid to the blind, and the local or state and local plans for general public assistance. In so far as he tax on employers for the support of the existing system of old-age and survivors insurance is passed along to consumers,

Census of 1940, Population, Vol. II, Pt. 1, p. 18.
Census of 1940, The Labor Force, Vol. III, Pt. 1, pp. 75, 79.


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Relief and Social Security
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