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Labor History Review 2

Labor History Review 2 - ILRCB Labor History Key Concepts...

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ILRCB Labor History Key Concepts People Presidents John L. Lewis Franklin Roosevelt (1933-1945) A. Philip Randolph Philip Murray Dwight Eisenhower (1953-1961) Walter Reuther John F. Kennedy (1961-1963) George Meany Lyndon Johnson (1963-1969) Jimmy Hoffa Richard Nixon (1969-1974) John Sweeney Jimmy Carter (1977-1981) Ronald Reagan (1981-1989) Groups AFL-CIO 1 In the 25 years after the merger, a number of important issues and trends emerged; they embrace both the tradition or improving working conditions and a new emphasis on issues involved in local, state, national and international affairs. While labor's interest in politics was by no means new, the development of COPE-the AFL-CIO's Committee on Political Education-brought to labor a more efficient and practical means of achieving these three goals: ( I ) To make workers aware of the records and promises of the candidates running for public office. (2) To encourage workers to register and to vote. (3) To endorse candidates at local, state and national levels. The AFL-CIO merger and its accompanying agreements brought about the virtual elimination of jurisdictional disputes between unions that had plagued the labor movement and alienated public sympathy in earlier years. The unions placed a new priority on organizing workers in areas, industries and plants where no effective system of labor representation yet existed. In many cases, it meant crossing the barriers of old thinking and tired methods to reach the employees of companies which for years had resisted unions. A major phenomenon of this period was the rapid growth of unions of government employees-federal, state and local. For many decades, postal employees, teachers, the fire fighters, and building and metal trades workers in some federal installations represented about the only substantially unionized part of public sector employment. With increasing economic pressures, more public employees turned to unions trend spurred on by such developments as an Executive Order by President Kennedy in 1962 underscoring the right of federal employees to join unions and negotiate on many issues, and by various statutes in the states and cities providing for various forms of collective bargaining with their personnel. Throughout the years after World War 11, women entered the workforce in ever increasing numbers, and especially significant was their entry into "nontraditional" occupations. A long sought objective, equal pay for equal work-was passed by Congress in 1963, prohibiting economic discrimination on the basis of sex. Throughout these years, the AFL-CIO was forced to resist various efforts to limit the rights of unions. The so-called "right-to-work" bills, which in fact were aimed at outlawing contract language providing union security, arose in many states. In Congress there were continued efforts to expand the Hobbs Act to make every picket-line scuffle or act of violence a federal case, even though they are currently covered by state and local laws.
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