Author

Robert Conn

Date of Award

Spring 1939

Document Type

Thesis

Department

Sociology & Anthropology

Abstract

Vocational Rehabilitation is a program of restoration of physically disabled persons to remunerative employment. This service comprises all those activities which are necessary to the preparation of handicapped persons for suitable occupations and of their placement therein. It is the purpose of this presentation to show first, the responsibilities of the Federal Government, secondly, the State Act and its relation to the Federal Act and thirdly, how the Federal and State Acts are functioning under the direction and supervision of the Bureau of Civilian Rehabilitation within the State of Montana. Previous to the present Rehabilitation Act it should be noted that the Smith-Hughes Act of 1917 provided for "Federal grants with the cooperation of the States, in education in agriculture, trades, Industries, commerce and Home Economics. The administrative agency being the Federal Board for Vocational Education." Also it should be noted that vocational rehabilitation should not be confused with the training of ex-service men by the United States Veterans’ Bureau. This Is the closest exemplication of the present vocational act. With the Assembly of Congress in 1920 such factors as the agitation on the part of charity organizations, the rise of modern orthopedic surgery, care of crippled children, and finally the increase in the number of persons disabled in one way or another served as important factors in the passage of this piece of legislation by both departments of Congress and in securing the approval of the President of the United States on June 2, 1920. The Federal Rehabilitation Program of 1920 has been amended four times since its enactment for the purposes of extending its provisions, the last and and most important amendment being Title V, Part IV of the Social Security Act, which made permanent the organic act, was approved August 14, 1935 states, "In order to enable the United States to cooperate with the States and Hawaii in extending and strengthening their program of vocational rehabilitation of physically handicapped and to continue to carry out the provisions and purposes of the Act entitled, An Act to provide for the promotion of vocational rehabilitation of persons disabled in industry or otherwise and their return to civil employment, approved June 2, 1920, there is hereby authorized to be appropriated for the fiscal years ending June 30, 1936 and June 30, 1937 the sum of $841,000 for each such fiscal year in addition to the amount of the existing authorization, and for each fiscal year thereafter the sum of $1,938,000. By this provision in the Social Security Act, the basis act of 1920 was made permanent and expanded without any change. Appropriations are increased $1,938,000 annually.

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