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Today in Labor History

July 31, 1999: The Great Shipyard Strike of 1999 ends after Steelworkers at Newport News Shipbuilding ratify a breakthrough agreement which nearly doubles pensions, increases security, ends inequality, and provides the highest wage increases in company and industry history to nearly 10,000 workers at the yard. The strike lasted 15 weeks.

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They're Called 'Scabs' for a Reason
Posted On: Oct 05, 2012

Oct. 5, 2012 | …When Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis famously said, "Labor cannot, on my terms, surrender the right to strike," he acknowledged that working people have only one weapon at their disposal–i.e., withholding their labor. Workers can scream and argue all they like, but without the threat of withholding their labor, they have no leverage…Strikes are perfectly legal; they've been around for a couple of hundred years and are recognized all over the western world. But if hitting the bricks is tantamount to economic suicide, it practically gives businesses free rein, which, with the middle class melting away like the earth's glaciers, is the last thing we need. Striker replacement legislation would make a tremendous difference. It would unshackle the American worker. It would liberate him, energize, inspire him. Guaranteeing workers the right to return to their jobs would not only level the playing field, it would change the whole ballgame. Read labor columnist David Macaray here.


 
 
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