Key events in world labor movement written by: Wajeeh1993
The world labor movement was a profound event that changed the history of the working class. Due to the achievements of many dedicated and renowned leaders, the labor movement spread far and wide, all around the globe. The working class began unraveling the shackles that had kept them submissive under the ruling class; they began to understand their rights and fought diligently to have their voices heard. It was due to this effort that an air of reform began to spread and many achievements became embedded in history. Today, the labor and working class has profound rights, their safety is safeguarded, leaves are guaranteed and income is sustainable. A walk down the key events in the world labor movements shows us the sacrifices made by leaders, the reforms that were brought about and the key law changes that occurred in different countries.
1969: The knights of labor were found
There was a formation occurring in 1969, Philadelphia, a secret society of knights, that would later become an important asset to a labor organization. These were called the Knights of Labor.
The railway strike: 1877
This became the first labor dispute to have occurred between workers and business owners; the tension was seen to be rising due to the unfair practices imposed on the working class. In Chicago, the dispute culminated into the Haymarket riot, and Chaos simmered as a bomb went off at the police.
Creation of AFL in 1890:
As the turmoil from the Haymarket riot continued, the American Federation of Labor( AFL) was formed, which would play a unique role in the future. Moreover, as the congress passed the Sherman Anti-trust act, employers gained far greater power, further angering the working class.
Beginning of Strikes
What started with Homestead Strike soon became a series of strikes all over. Courts joined hands with the employers to crush to the union. Followed by the Pullman strike, union workers refused to work at the Pullman Company in Illinois.
Formation of IWW:
Western miners and activists all around the globe got together to form the Industrial workers of the World convention in Chicago. This became on the stronger precursor for freedom and gave rise to a militant air. During this time, there were bombings in Los Angeles times and Strikes in New York under the name of International Ladies Garment workers Union (ILGWU). This was to call for a pay raise and a reduction of working hours for women. More than 20, 000 workers walked out of their jobs.
Minimum wage law implemented
Following the strike, Massachusetts adopted the first-ever minimum wage law, which guaranteed a secure minimum pay to women and other minors. Other states followed the lead and adopted the policy! This was one of the key events in the world labor history.
The establishment of Federal Department of Labor: Key reforms in world labor laws
Due to efforts of activists the First United Stated Department of Labor came into existence in 1914. Moreover, Clayton Act passed a few years later exempted unions from following the Sherman Anti-trust Act. The Adamson Act in 1919 further established an 8 hour work day for all workers, with extra pay for working longer.
The war and death of activists:
As the war broke out, many activists lost their life and others found themselves executed by the law or in jail. The Davis-Bacon Act and Norris-La Guardia Act passed during this time also bring favorable reforms for workers, such as benefits for employees and wage dispute resolution.
First Female Secretary of Labor:
In 1935, Perkins became the First Secretary of labor as a woman and had a pro-labor agenda. She established minimum wage laws, Unemployment insurance, elderly pension and eliminated child labor.
Fast forwarding to Kennedy: Key reforms in world labor laws
The situation, in essence, did not change dramatically until Kennedy legalized Public employee unions giving them the freedom to strike. This followed the Equal pay act for both genders and Pension standards which set minimum Private sector pension and health plans for workers.
The air of change called every working union to strike, including the Major League Baseball teams, Air traffic controllers (PATCO), United Food and the Commercial Worker Union and the United Parcel Service. These workers called for part-time work options and benefits for workers.
Change to win formed in 2001
The service employee’s international Union and other activists around the world came together to for Change to win. It was this that led to success for laborers all around the world, an air of prosperity and welfare for workers.