What was the purpose of the NIRA program of the New Deal?  

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mkoren eNotes educator| Certified Educator

President Franklin D. Roosevelt launched a series of programs to try to help deal with effects of the Great Depression. These programs were known as the New Deal. The purpose of these programs was to bring relief, recovery, and reform to our economic system.

The National Industrial Recovery Act was one of the recovery programs. This program, run by Hugh Johnson, established a series of codes or rules of fair competition. These rules set wages, prices, and hours of work. These rules were designed to stop the downward spiral in the economy by spreading work around so more people could be employed, to pay workers fairly, and to set prices at a certain level depending on the industry. If more people were working and being fairly paid, they would demand products. This would prevent prices from dropping. The law also gave unions the right to exist.

There was a lot of publicity given to this program. Participating businesses were able to display the Blue Eagle Symbol showing that the business was doing its part to work with the government to help end the Great Depression. Business owners felt pressure to be involved in the program. If they didn’t display the Blue Eagle Symbol, they could be questioned why they weren’t involved in the program.

Not everybody liked this program. Efficient businesses felt it helped those businesses that weren’t efficient. Small businesses felt the codes favored the large businesses. Business owners weren’t thrilled the unions had the right to exist. Eventually, the Supreme Court ruled this program unconstitutional, bringing it to an end.

The National Industrial Recovery Act was designed to help bring the country out of the Great Depression.