Today in Labor History – April 16th

Garment Workers Parade May Day 1916

Jacob Coxey was born on this date in Masillon, Ohio. Coxey, a populist businessman, proposed ending the 1893 depression by issuing Treasury notes to pay for a work-relief program. When Congress refused to pass his bill, Coxey led an “Army of the Poor” from Ohio to Washington, DC, where Coxey and his lieutenants were arrested, while 50 of his followers were beaten or trampled – 1854

25,000 garment workers in New York City were locked out by employers in a dispute over hiring practices. A General Strike was called by the International Ladies’ Garment Workers Union ending in 14 weeks, with the 60,000 striking workers winning union recognition and the contractual right to strike – 1916

500 workers in Texas City, Texas died when a huge oil refinery and chemical plant had a series of explosions and fires – 1947

Thousands protested in Washington, D.C. at meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund One against policies that aid corporate profits while increasing poverty and environmental degradation – 2000

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