Economic Opportunity Act Of 1964 Flashcards, test questions and answers
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What is Economic Opportunity Act Of 1964?
The Economic Opportunity Act of 1964 was a landmark piece of legislation that sought to eliminate poverty and create economic opportunity for all Americans. Signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson, the act marked a shift from the traditional notion of welfare to an approach that focused on empowering individuals and communities. The act created several programs designed to improve education, health care, housing and employment opportunities for low-income individuals and families.The Economic Opportunity Act created several new government programs aimed at eliminating poverty and creating economic opportunity. These included the Job Corps program which provided job training to young adults; Work Study which provided college students with part-time jobs; Head Start which provided early childhood education opportunities; VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) which offered volunteer opportunities for young people; Community Action Agencies which funded local grassroots efforts aimed at improving conditions in low-income communities; Neighborhood Youth Corps which trained disadvantaged youth in community service activities; Upward Bound which encouraged college enrollment among low-income students; Food Stamps which helped provide food assistance to needy families; and Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) providing additional funding for schools serving disadvantaged populations.In addition, the Economic Opportunity Act expanded existing social welfare programs such as Social Security, unemployment insurance, public housing assistance, Medicaid, Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Adult Assistance Programs (AAPs) and others. It also established the Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) as a federal agency responsible for administering these programs. Overall, the Economic Opportunity Act was an ambitious effort by President Johnson’s administration to address persistent inequality in American society by creating greater economic opportunity for all citizens regardless of race or class background. Since its passage in 1964 it has been credited with helping millions of Americans escape poverty while preparing them for future success through its educational initiatives, job training programs and other social services. As we continue our efforts towards greater equality today it is important that we remember this legislation as part of our larger national commitment towards creating true economic opportunity for all our citizens.