4) The unemployed affected by the economic crisis of 1929.
On October 29th 1929, the New York Stock Exchange collapsed. Shares price are exceptionally low, encouraging people to buy them on credit, eager to make a profit when the shares will go back up. But they never do, which plunges North Americans and Europeans into what will be called the Great Crash of 1929. Overnight, tens of thousands of people lose their assets and find themselves on the street. In Quebec, the crisis will have a major impact for a decade, while the unemployment rate reaches a record-breaking of 27%. The people of Terrebonne will not escape this fate.
Several government decisions are made to lead Quebec out of this dark period. The Unemployment Relief Act, which involves a partnership with the federal government to start the construction of various public projects, providing jobs to Quebec citizens, especially to fathers of large families. Many of Terrebonne’s unemployed citizens are assigned to the reconstruction of the town hall, which ends in 1931.
At that time, the government distributes aid in the form of vouchers redeemable for food, housing and clothing. In the fall of 1931, believing the system to be too restrictive, the Liberal government of Louis-Alexandre Taschereau replaces coupons with checks. It will be the first form of social welfare in Quebec.
Around you is the park known as "Les Jardins Vitré". This is the subject of the next question...