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Download File - Labor Unions


  • pg 1
									                 Bell ringer
   If you were a worker at one of the Wal-
    Mart factories overseas, what could/would
    you do to try to make changes?
  Solutions to

Labor Unions????
 definition
 Collective bargaining
 Goal-improve wages, hours, & working
 If that does not work….
 Strike
 Slow downs
 Walk outs
 Scab
 Black list
Hundreds of male and female Shirtwaist
strikers march to City Hall. Placard says
       "Union Contract [illegible]".
Female Shirtwaist makers hold signs
  that read "Workhouse Prisoner."
Textile strikers in Lawrence, MA,
 gather near the railroad tracks
           Famous Strikes and Riots:
          The Great Railroad Strike
       After cutting wages, workers went on strike across East
        Coast  led to Riots

       President Hayes called in state militias which caused
        problems  led to over 100 dead before strike ended

       Result:
    –     Weakened railroad unions
    –     Damaged reputation of labor unions because of the disruption
          and failure.
    –     10%, strikers destroyed equipment, rioted in the streets.
The Great Railroad Strike of 1877
The Great Railroad Strike of 1877
       Famous Strikes and Riots:
     The Haymarket Square Riot
   AFL was demanding a 8hr workday for all Employers,
    and if not done by May 1, 1886, called for a general

   Police harassment of workers/strikers killed 4 strikers the
    day before, called for a meeting in Haymarket Square

   Police ordered people to disperse, bomb was thrown
    (killed 6 officers, 67 injured)

   8 anarchists convicted of murder, unjust trial, they were
    – 7 sentenced to death 1 suicide, 4 executed, 2 terms to life in
Haymarket Square Riot
                 The Homestead Strike
   Members of AAISW (Iron & Steel Workers union) very skilled workers, in high
    demand by employers, so they held some degree of power in the workplace

   Employers often resented the control the laborers had

   Mid-1880s, steel industry had new production methods, which reduced companies’
    dependence on skilled labor

   Carnegie decided AAISW in Homestead steel plant had to go and other plants.

   Carnegie and managers repeatedly cut wages, union accepted

   After wage cut after wage cut, AAISW called for a strike, head of homestead Henry
    Clay Frick called for 300 Pinkertons guards (strikebreakers)

   Battle between strikers and Pinkertons, 3 guards, 10 strikers died, guards
    surrendered, but company called in PA National Guard (8.000 troops)

   Public turned against strikers after Frick assassination attempt

   9. AAISW failed in its attempt, membership declined to nothing
The Homestead Strike
                The Pullman Strike
   Pullman Palace Car Company built/repaired at company in Pullman, Chicago

   Company built town of Pullman so workers could rent homes from owner,
    George M. Pullman

   Rents high, and in 1893 wages slashed due to the Panic of 1893 (depression),
    but Pullman refused to lower rents

   Workers went on strike, led by Eugene V. Debs, within days thousands of
    railroad workers in 27 states/territories went on strike = no transportation from
    Chicago to West Coast

   Most state governors supported Business side, but Ill. Governor Peter Aletgeld
    was sympathetic towards workers and did not send state militia

   Others asked Fed. Gov to send militia, Cleveland disliked unions and sent troops

   Union leaders (Eugene V. Debs) were arrested and imprisoned. The strike
The Pullman Strike
      Three Major Labor Unions

   Knights of Labor

   American Federation of Laborers (AFL)

                 Knights of Labor
   Founded by Uriah S. Stephens  membership opened to all
    workers, and most business & professional people. Excluded:
    lawyers, bankers, liquor dealers, and professional gamblers.

   Actually WELCOMED women!

   Not really centralized, met locally

   Philosophy: 8 hour work day, abolition of child labor, wanted
    long range reform to replace the “wage system” with a
    “cooperative system” in which workers themselves control a large
    part of the economy.

    Secret organization  Late 1870s order became public and grew
    to 700,000 members by 1886.

   Too big to control  local chapters launched series of strikes that
    discredited the Union. 1890 membership shrunk to 100,000. A
    few years later, disappeared.
    American Federation of Laborers
   Founded by Samuel Gompers

   Rejected the AFL’s idea of one labor union for everyone, instead
    was an association of essentially autonomous craft unions and
    represented mainly skilled workers.

   Generally hostile to organizing unskilled workers

   FL against women in the workforce all together because they felt
    women should be at home, but they did seek equal pay for those
    women who did work and sought women organizers for industries
    predominated by women.

   Philosophy: Accept capitalism, but secure for the workers a greater
    share of capitalism’s material rewards. Objected fundamental
    economic reform, government protection of workers. Focused
    instead on Labor/Management relationships. Better Wages, hours,
    and working conditions through collective bargaining, but will use
    strikes if necessary.
   Industrial Workers of the World (IWW)

   Never more than 100,000 members

   Conducted numerous strikes, many with
                Labor’s Weaknesses
   Late 19th century, workers made few gains, suffered many

   Wages rose hardly at all, could not keep up w/ rising cost of

   Reason for Failures: principal labor organizations represented
    only a small percentage of the industrial work force. ONLY
    4% of industrial workers belonged to a Union in 1900.

   2 reasons for not organizing:
    – Immigrants usually only intended to make some money in America and
      then return home
    – Other American workers believed they were not going to be part of a
      permanent working class and that they or their children would become
      a higher position in society.
    Dislike for Labor Unions
   Often hard to Unionize

   If wide unemployment, people rather low paying
    jobs than no jobs

   resentment of unions by middle class believed
    radical workers to be at heart of all problems
 Knights of Labor
 Great Railroad Strike
 Haymarket Riot
 Pullman Strike

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