Genesis Of Labor Unions

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Genesis of Labor Unions

Genesis of Labor Unions


The labor unions are an important aspect in today's business scenario. The work place today is going through various dynamics and is moving highly towards globalization. The formation of the labor unions has its origin from the 18th century. The concept came into being due to cater the collaborative demands of the labor force. There was a need of a structured organization that would deal with the issues of the labor force.

Genesis of Labor Unions

The labor unions have an origin back in the 18th century. It was a phase of the industrial revolution in Europe. During this era there was a rush of new workers into the work force that had a demand for representation. The concept of labor unions exploded in the United States of America, during the 19th century. The first labor foundation founded was named NLU - National Labor Union, in the year 1866. The foundation of this union set an essential standard in the country. Historically, the trade unions and early workers had a major contribution in the independence of United States of America. Their struggle for the protection of labor became a significant part of the American and working culture. The most famous movement of the labor union was American Federation of Labor which was founded in 1886. This movement had around 1.4 million union members. The credit gained by this movement was the successful negotiation of the increase in wages for the members. It also demanded for the enhancements in the workplace safety (Murray, 2002). The unionization in the beginning was mostly temporary, but later on the activities led to the modern concept of unionization/labor union.

Workers began to realize their importance and the power employers possessed. They united with other cities in order to form large unions. The emergence of labor unions was also due to the mass immigrants that increased the number of workers in the labor force. The individual of workers was decreasing and there was high deviation in the wages and working conditions (Roberts, 1996). These circumstances gave birth to the concept of unionization or labor union. The union movements started and came in the form of strikes which was an attempt to get the demands of the labor force noticed.

American Federation of Labor passed a legislation to help the labor rights. This movement also pushed the creation of the United States Department of Labor. It was mandatory on this department to protect the labor rights and wage earners. It also focused on the protection of child labor and better working conditions. This was a great initiation towards the concept of labor unions.

Conditions that Enabled the Labor Unions

The labor unions were enabled to protect the labor rights and working conditions. There were some particular reasons that gave rise to this concept. There was a demand for higher wages and better benefits to provide better economical conditions for the labor force. There was a lot of discrimination due to the large ...