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Labor law highlights, 1915–2015

Bureau of Labor Statistics – Monthly Labor Review – October 2015 – Labor law highlights, 1915–2015 – “To help mark the Monthly Labor Review’s centennial, the Review invited several producers and users of BLS data to take a look back at the last 100 years. This article highlights important U.S. labor legislation since 1915. Areas of focus are child labor laws, gender equality, racial equality, working conditions, and union membership. “Democracy cannot work unless it is honored in the factory as well as the polling booth; men cannot truly be free in body and spirit unless their freedom extends into places where they earn their daily bread.” This declaration, uttered by Senator Robert Wagner as he introduced the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) of 1935, offers a fair summation of the reasoning underlying many of the labor laws enacted during the past century. Equality and the rule of law are considered among the most important principles of democracy—principles that Wagner articulated. This article highlights some of the more important labor laws that have been passed in the hundred years that the Monthly Labor Review has been in publication. All the legislation discussed in this article has, in some way, advanced principles of democracy within the U.S. workforce.”

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