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Sat Aug 30, 2014, 05:10 PM

The Black-Connery Bill stipulated a 30-hour work week

http://www.blackwellreference.com/public/tocnode?id=g9781577180999_chunk_g97815771809994_ss1-99

Back in the 1930's the Senate passed the Black-Connery Bill, supported by the AFL, which stipulated a 30-hour work week only to have the House overturn the bill in favor of FDR's National Recovery Act. We came close. Could this bill be revived or can a new one mandating a shorter work week be based on it?

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Reply The Black-Connery Bill stipulated a 30-hour work week (Original post)
TheGoodNews Aug 2014 OP
TheGoodNews Aug 2014 #1
MH1 Aug 2014 #2
leftstreet Aug 2014 #3
TheGoodNews Sep 2014 #4

Response to TheGoodNews (Original post)

Sun Aug 31, 2014, 07:10 PM

1. 4 Recs

This bill was actually passed by the Senate, though eventually overturned. Maybe we could discuss practical ways to reduce our work week or the overall time we put in without hurting workers financially? Say the production schedule begins at 6am and ends at 6pm. Two six-hour shifts between two workers could neatly cover it. It may not work for every position, but we can still discuss several different possibilities like alternate Fridays off or accumulated off days at the end of the year. Or do you prefer most of us keep over working while many of us stay unemployed? Bottomline, this might be one of the key dilemmas facing workers when you consider the economic and health effects.

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Response to TheGoodNews (Original post)

Sun Aug 31, 2014, 09:32 PM

2. Well, in my job the "40-hour work week" is a joke anyway.

But it would be nice if the official baseline were 30.

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Response to TheGoodNews (Original post)

Sun Aug 31, 2014, 09:41 PM

3. The National Assho...Association of Manufacturers killed it

“We stand unflinchingly for the six-hour day and the five-day week in industry,” thundered AFL president William Green to a labor meeting in San Francisco that spring. Franklin Roosevelt and Labor Secretary Frances Perkins also initially endorsed the idea, but the president buckled under opposition from the National Association of Manufacturers and dropped his support for the bill, which was then defeated in the House of Representatives.

In its place, Roosevelt advocated job-creating New Deal spending and a forty-hour workweek limit, passed into law on October 24, 1938, as part of the Fair Labor Standards Act. But we came that close to an official thirty-hour workweek in America. Close, but no cigar…

KELLOGG’S SIX-HOUR DAY

Nonetheless, many American companies did go to a 30-hour workweek during the depression, most prominently, the Kellogg Cereal Company, which established five-day, six-hour, shifts in December, 1930. Kellogg’s and the workers split the pay loss resulting from the cut in hours; Kellogg’s initially paid his workers for seven hours a day, but upped that to the amount they had previously received for eight-hours work two years later, when he saw that hourly productivity had soared.

In his earlier books, Work Without End and Kellogg’s Six-Hour Day, Hunnicutt reports that the measure added 400 new jobs to Kellogg’s Battle Creek, Michigan, work force, while improving family and community life dramatically. After World War II, Kellogg’s began abandoning the six-hour shifts in favor of eight hours, largely because increasing benefit packages made it cheaper to hire few workers and keep them on the job longer. But the end of the six-hour shifts didn’t come until 1985, when the last six-hour workers were told that if they didn’t accept the longer work days, Kellogg’s would leave Battle Creek.

http://www.alternet.org/labor/when-america-came-close-establishing-30-hour-workweek


DURec

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Response to leftstreet (Reply #3)

Thu Sep 11, 2014, 08:14 PM

4. "Close, but no cigar…"

We can always try again. Couldn't the Fair Labor Standards Act be amended? Could that be one way to go?

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