Today in Labor History – December 4th

labor history december 4

The National Federation of Postal Clerks was chartered on this date. – 1906

President Roosevelt announced the end of the Work Projects Administration (WPA), concluding the four-year run of one of the American government’s most ambitious public works programs. It helped create jobs for roughly 8.5 million people during the Great Depression and left a legacy of highways and public buildings, among other public gains. – 1943

Walter Reuther, President of the United Auto Workers, was elected head of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO). Four years later, he led the merger of the CIO and the American Federation of Labor to form the AFL-CIO. -1951

Following an injunction against the United Farm Workers Organizing Committee and Cesar Chavez specifically, around picketing lettuce grower Bud Antle during the Salinas Valley farmworkers’ strike, Chavez refused to call off the boycott and was arrested. Chavez was jailed for two weeks until the California Supreme Court ordered his release. – 1970

The U.S. Department of Labor reported employers slashed 533,000 jobs the month before—the most in 34 years—as the Great Recession surged. The unemployment rolls had risen for seven months before that and were to continue to soar for another 10 months before topping 10 percent and beginning to level off late the following year. – 2008

Walter Reuther; labor’s rugged individualist,

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