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Today in Labor History

Jan. 15, 1934
U.S. legislators pass the Civil Works Emergency Relief Act, providing funds for the Federal Emergency Relief Administration, which funneled money to states plagued by Depression-era poverty and unemployment, and oversaw the subsequent distribution and relief efforts.

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Updated: Jan. 17 (04:43)

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Who Should Say When a Workplace Is Safe? The Workers, That’s Who
Posted On: Jul 27, 2020
July 27, 2020 | OPINION | Back in April, Nelson Lichtenstein, the dean of American labor historians, wrote a piece for us arguing that states should establish workers’ councils that would decide when it was safe to return to their worksites and would have the authority to monitor those worksites for safety conditions when work resumed. While I know of no state that’s enacted anything so sensible, Los Angeles County—which, with ten million residents, is a lot bigger than a host of states—became the first jurisdiction to do so when the County Board of Supervisors passed a partial version of this idea. Noting that public-health officials were completely overwhelmed by the number of possibly unsafe workplaces, the five-member Board of Supes explicitly authorized the establishment of workers’ councils with the power to monitor workplace safety… The American Prospect
 
 
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