State Regulation of Labor Relations

November 12, 1937

Report Outline
Recent State Labor Relations Laws
Struggle for Anti-Injunction Laws
Adjustment of Labor Disputes by the States
“Little Wagner Acts” in the States

Recent State Labor Relations Laws

Within the last 12 months, laws regulating some phase of employer-employee relationships have been enacted by the legislatures of more than half of the states. The legislation enacted in this field during the last year far exceeds that of any previous 12-month period both in volume and in importance. Five states set up labor-relations boards with powers similar to those exercised by the federal board established under the Wagner Act, while a number of other states set up mediation boards or improved existing machinery for the settlement of labor disputes. Several states undertook to limit the issuance of injunctions in labor controversies, to outlaw yellow-dog contracts, or to legalize picketing. A few other states banned sit-down strikes. Laws regulating the time and medium of wage payment, or the payment of workers during strikes and lockouts, were enacted in about a dozen states. Still other states imposed restrictions on the appointment of deputy sheriff or on the use of private detectives and company guards in labor disputes.

The present preoccupation of state legislatures with laws regulating labor relations is attributable primarily to: (1) the rapid growth of the labor movement during the upswing in the business cycle, (2) the increase in labor disputes by which this growth has been marked, and (3) the precedent created by the enactment of such federal legislation as the Norris-La Guardia anti-injunction law and the Wagner Labor Relations Act.

C. I. O.-A. F. of L. Campaign for State Legislation

Nearly all of the labor-relations legislation enacted in the states this year was favorable to organized labor and was placed on the statute books at its behest. Laws adopted in Massachusetts, Tennessee, and Vermont outlawing sit-down strikes represented the only legislation restricting union activities. Labor's determination to continue its drive for the enactment of favorable legislation was signalized by the adoption at the first convention of the Committee for Industrial Organization, at Atlantic City in mid-October, of a resolution directing its constituent unions to give their “full support” to a state legislative program consisting of eight “model bills.” These measures are designed to:

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Labor Unions
Aug. 07, 2015  Unions at a Crossroads
Sep. 02, 2005  Labor Unions' Future Updated
Jun. 28, 1996  Labor Movement's Future
Jun. 14, 1985  Organized Labor in the 1980s
Nov. 06, 1981  Labor Under Siege
Mar. 24, 1978  Labor's Southern Strategy
Aug. 20, 1976  Labor's Options
Oct. 27, 1971  Organized Labor After the Freeze
Oct. 19, 1966  Labor Strife and the Public Interest
Jan. 30, 1963  Strike Action and the Law
Sep. 20, 1961  Conflicts in Organized Labor
Aug. 04, 1960  Labor, Management, and the National Interest
Dec. 16, 1959  Future of Free Collective Bargaining
Nov. 04, 1959  Featherbedding and Union Work Rules
Feb. 18, 1959  Public Intervention in Labor Disputes
Jul. 09, 1958  Suits Against Labor Unions
Nov. 13, 1957  Right-To-Work Laws
Oct. 31, 1956  Union Organizing
May 01, 1954  State Powers in Labor Relations
Oct. 02, 1953  Toward Labor Unity
Apr. 11, 1953  Industry-Wide Bargaining and Industry-Wide Strikes
Sep. 03, 1952  Labor and Politics
Mar. 25, 1950  Labor Injunctions
Jan. 25, 1950  Trade Unions and Productivity
Sep. 26, 1949  Fact-Finding Boards in Labor Disputes
Mar. 05, 1949  Closed Shop
Dec. 01, 1948  Revision of the Taft-Hartley Act
Jan. 01, 1947  Labor Unions, the Public and the Law
Oct. 09, 1946  Revision of the Wagner Act
Sep. 25, 1946  Labor Productivity
May 29, 1946  Labor Organization in the South
Jan. 30, 1946  Compulsory Settlement of Labor Disputes
May 18, 1945  Labor Policy After the War
Mar. 29, 1945  Union Maintenance
Feb. 02, 1945  Labor Relations in Coal Mining
Oct. 12, 1944  No-Strike Pledge
Sep. 16, 1944  Political Action by Organized Labor
May 30, 1944  Unionization of Foremen
Apr. 01, 1944  Dismissal Pay
Apr. 29, 1943  Labor in Government
Apr. 09, 1943  Public Regulation of Trade Unions
Nov. 19, 1941  Labor Policies of the Roosevelt Administration
Oct. 23, 1941  Closed Shop Issue in Labor Relations
Mar. 29, 1941  Labor as Partner in Production
Feb. 12, 1941  Labor and the Defense Program
Feb. 23, 1940  Labor in Politics
Jan. 17, 1939  Settlement of Disputes Between Labor Unions
Jul. 01, 1938  Three Years of National Labor Relations Act
Nov. 12, 1937  State Regulation of Labor Relations
Jul. 10, 1937  Restrictions on the Right to Strike
Apr. 28, 1937  The Labor Market and the Unemployed
Mar. 26, 1937  Control of the Sit-Down Strike
Mar. 13, 1937  Collective Bargaining in the Soft-Coal Industry
Jan. 22, 1937  Responsibility of Labor Unions
Nov. 11, 1936  Industrial Unionism and the A.F. of L.
Jul. 30, 1936  Federal Intervention in Labor Disputes
Jul. 14, 1936  Labor Relations in the Steel Industry
Apr. 17, 1934  Company Unions and Collective Bargaining
Feb. 07, 1934  Settlement of Labor Disputes
Sep. 12, 1933  Trade Unionism Under the Recovery Program
Feb. 17, 1932  Wage Concessions by Trade Unions
Oct. 01, 1929  Status of the American Labor Movement
Jul. 20, 1929  Trade Unionism in the South
Aug. 31, 1928  Organized Labor in National Politics
Feb. 04, 1928  The Use of Injunctions in Labor Disputes
Sep. 09, 1927  Organized Labor and the Works Council Movement
Oct. 12, 1923  The A.F. of L. and the “New Radicalism”
Regulation and Deregulation
State, Local, and Intergovernmental Relations
Unions and Labor-Management Relations