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Today in Labor History

Sept. 20, 1878
Upton Sinclair was born in Baltimore, Maryland. Sinclair wrote the 1906 novel The Jungle, which became famous for its vivid portrayal of the unsanitary condition of Chicago meatpacking houses. It was also an indictment of the bosses’ exploitation of workers, political corruption, union corruption, and the abuse of immigrants.
- Voices of Labor

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Updated: Sep. 21 (18:05)

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Posted On: Aug 12, 2019
Aug. 12, 2019 | LABOR HISTORY | A dozen years ago, migrant workers in the “winter tomato capital” of Immokalee, Fla., arrived for work around 7 a.m. but had to wait up to four hours, unpaid, for the sun to dry the plants before they could start picking and start getting paid. For many, the goal was to earn $60 a day, which meant picking 4,800 pounds of tomatoes in the blistering sun without any breaks or shade. As Steven Greenhouse writes in his new book, “Beaten Down, Worked Up,” crew leaders regularly cheated pickers out of $10 or $15 of their wages or withheld pay altogether. “When workers complained, the crew leaders sometimes beat them or fired them,” Greenhouse writes. “Female workers had it worst of all. Crew leaders frequently groped them or demanded sex if women wanted to keep their jobs.”… Washington Post
 
 
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