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Labor Relations - College Papers

Labor Relations


This paper will attempt to discuss the pros and cons of trade unionism, as it exists in the United States. To understand the pros and cons, it is important to understand the environment in which trade unionism developed and the needs they attempted to satisfy. It will discuss the evolution of Trade Unionism through the centuries. From that understanding we can discuss the topic as it relates to our current environment. Historians agree that American Unionism started in the early 19th Century. These early organizations were formed along the lines of Craft. Daniel Mills explains, in , "Crafts people worked for themselves, or in small shops. They were often in conflict with customers or ...

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" They were often loosely organized associations, which were quite short-lived and likely to disappear under hostile pressure from employers and government." (15) The unions of the late 19th and early 20th centuries were formed largely to protect basic human dignity in the work place. Unions addressed basic concerns regarding safety issues, length of work day and wage. They were largely unsuccessful due to the public perception of unions as Socialistic as well as anti American. People viewed trade unions as being disruptive to the flow of free trade. It was only during the 1930's that trade unions, as we know them today, were created and accepted. With the passing of the Wagner Act of 1935, formal, legal protection was now afforded Trade Unions in America. Trade unions moved from being virtually outlawed by the US Government to being the beneficiaries of their legal protection. Morgan Reynolds tells us, in his Power and Privilege, " the common definition of Labor Union in the ...

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were locked out of a Common Wealth Gas plant for turning down a contract calling for more than 50 concessions while two weeks previously management was given 3 million dollars compensation. This occurred while the company was making a record 54 million dollar profit. ( 2 ). It follows, when considering the previous statement, inequities in pay are as prevalent in 1996 as they were in 1926. Unions are needed to lessen these inequities by fighting for workers wages. In Richard Freeman's, What Do Unions Do, he states, "Union membership advances pay treatment for groups that are historically the least paid. There is a wider disparity in the wages of Union vs. non Union workers among ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 5/23/2004 04:35:51 AM
Category: World History
Type: Free Paper
Words: 2426
Pages: 9

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