HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Topics » Activism » Socialist Progressives (Group) » Fair Labor Standards Act ...

Tue Apr 15, 2014, 08:37 PM

Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938

The more things change the more they stay the same ... when you read these paragraphs it will remind you of things you currently hear in the MSM - they are repeating the same lame excuses they always have:


Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938:
Maximum Struggle for a Minimum Wage

By Jonathan Grossman

When he felt the time was ripe,
President Roosevelt asked
Secretary of Labor Perkins,
'What happened to that
nice unconstitutional bill
you had tucked away?'

On Saturday, June 25, 1938, to avoid pocket vetoes 9 days after Congress had adjourned, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed 121 bills. Among these bills was a landmark law in the Nation's social and economic development -- Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA). Against a history of judicial opposition, the depression-born FLSA had survived, not unscathed, more than a year of Congressional altercation. In its final form, the act applied to industries whose combined employment represented only about one-fifth of the labor force. In these industries, it banned oppressive child labor and set the minimum hourly wage at 25 cents, and the maximum workweek at 44 hours.

Forty years later, a distinguished news commentator asked incredulously: "My God! 25 cents an hour! Why all the fuss?" President Roosevelt expressed a similar sentiment in a "fireside chat" the night before the signing. He warned: "Do not let any calamity-howling executive with an income of $1,000 a day, ...tell you...that a wage of $11 a week is going to have a disastrous effect on all American industry." In light of the social legislation of 1978, Americans today may be astonished that a law with such moderate standards could have been thought so revolutionary.

Courting disaster

The Supreme Court had been one of the major obstacles to wage-hour and child-labor laws. Among notable cases is the 1918 case of Hammer v. Dagenhart in which the Court by one vote held unconstitutional a Federal child-labor law. Similarly in Adkins v. Children's Hospital in 1923, the Court by a narrow margin voided the District of Columbia law that set minimum wages for women. During the 1930's, the Court's action on social legislation was even more devastating ...

Much more here: http://www.dol.gov/dol/aboutdol/history/flsa1938.htm

0 replies, 1125 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Reply to this thread