Elizabeth Magee

From Ohio History Central

In 1920, a sufficient number of states ratified the Nineteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. This amendment granted women the right to vote. This amendment marked a dramatic improvement for women and their rights, however, efforts to improve women's rights did not just center on the right to vote. One woman who played an active role in improving working conditions for women and children was Elizabeth Magee. Magee served as the executive director of the Ohio Consumers' League from 1925 to 1965. Founded in the late 1800s, the original purpose of this organization was to improve working conditions especially for women and children. Magee continued these efforts during her years as director, but she also sought to aid unemployed workers. The Ohio Consumers' League advocated unemployment insurance for workers residing in the state. Governor George White selected Magee to serve on Ohio's Commission on Unemployment due to her efforts with the Consumers' League. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt appointed Magee to the Women's Bureau of the Department of Labor. Magee also was a member of President Harry S. Truman's Commission on the Health Needs of the Nation. On this commission, Magee actively campaigned for a national health insurance program. While serving in these various positions, Magee continued to head the Ohio Consumers' League, as well as served in various positions in the National Consumers' League, including as general secretary from 1943 to 1958. Thanks to Magee's and other women's efforts, conditions dramatically improved for women politically, socially, and economically.

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