Monday, September 05, 2011

Happy Labor Day!

According to Wikipedia, "Frances Perkins was the U.S. Secretary of Labor from 1933 to 1945, and the first woman appointed to the U.S. Cabinet. As a loyal supporter of her friend, Franklin D. Roosevelt, she helped pull the labor movement into the New Deal coalition."

It goes on to say, "During her term as Secretary of Labor, Perkins championed many aspects of the
New Deal, including the Civilian Conservation Corps, the Public Works Administration and its successor the Federal Works Agency, and the labor portion of the National Industrial Recovery Act. With The Social Security Act she established unemployment benefits, pensions for the many uncovered elderly Americans, and welfare for the poorest Americans.

"She pushed to reduce workplace accidents and helped craft laws against child labor. Through the Fair Labor Standards Act, she established the first minimum wage and overtime laws for American workers, and defined the standard 40-hour work week. She formed governmental policy for working with labor unions and helped to alleviate strikes by way of the United States Conciliation Service..."

Following her government service career, Perkins remained active as a teacher and lecturer at the New York State School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University until her death in 1965 at age 85.

In 1980 the U.S. Postal service issued a stamp in her honor.

To learn more about Frances Perkins, click here.

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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM