Revision of the Social Security Act

July 26, 1938

Report Outline
Probable Amendment of Act by Next Congress
Proposed Changes in Old-Age Insurance System
Revision of Unemployment Compensation System

Probable Amendment of Act by Next Congress

Roosevelt's Desire to Liberalize Existing Provisions

Signing the Social Security Act on August 14, 1935, President Roosevelt described the new law as the “cornerstone in a structure which is being built, but is by no means complete.” During the last three years the President has repeatedly spoken of the need for amendment of the act in the light of experience and has pointed to the example of Great Britain, whose social insurance laws have been modified every few years for more than a quarter of a century. No changes have yet been made in the American Social Security Act, but the administration will propose a comprehensive program of amendments to the next Congress.

President Roosevelt opened the way for thorough overhauling of the act when he wrote to Chairman Altmeyer, last April 28, that he was “very anxious that in the press of administrative duties the Social Security Board will not lose sight of the necessity of studying ways and means of improving and extending” the act's provisions.

The enactment of the Social Security Act marked a great advance in affording more equitable and effective protection to the people of this country against widespread and growing economic hazards. The successful operation of the act is the best proof that it was soundly conceived. However, it would he unfortunate if we assumed that it was complete and final. Rather, we should be constantly seeking to perfect and strengthen it in the light of our accumulating experience and growing appreciation of social needs.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Social Security
Sep. 10, 2021  Social Security
Jun. 03, 2016  Social Security
Sep. 24, 2004  Social Security Reform
Oct. 02, 1998  Saving Social Security
May 12, 1995  Overhauling Social Security
Apr. 05, 1991  Social Security: The Search for Fairness
Dec. 17, 1982  Social Security Options
Jun. 29, 1979  Social Security Reassessment
Dec. 27, 1974  Retirement Security
Sep. 20, 1972  Social Security Financing
Dec. 14, 1966  Social Security Improvements
Mar. 28, 1956  Social Security for the Disabled
Mar. 26, 1953  Social Security Expansion
Aug. 17, 1951  Relief Rolls in Prosperity
Dec. 24, 1949  Pensions for All
Aug. 12, 1948  Security for the Aged
Apr. 11, 1946  Social Insurance
Mar. 02, 1944  Social Security
Dec. 02, 1939  Liberalization of the Social Security System
Oct. 01, 1938  Agitation for Pension and Scrip Schemes
Jul. 26, 1938  Revision of the Social Security Act
Oct. 02, 1936  The Social Security Controversy
Nov. 12, 1934  Federal Assistance to the Aged
Aug. 23, 1930  Public Old-Age Pensions
Retirement, Pensions, and Social Security
Social Security