As union membership declines, the gig economy continues to grow, and automation becomes an increasing priority, the labor rights movement in the U.S. faces stiff challenges. The Onion presents a timeline of key events in the labor rights movement.


1619

The first labor strike on U.S. soil is organized by Bernie Sanders.


1903

The Women’s Trade Union League forms, immediately and permanently equalizing the American workforce.

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1911

The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire inspires many to think the country might be better if workers didn’t die in mass numbers all the time.

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1938

Parents nationwide bemoan the passage of child labor laws.


1940

Woody Guthrie vastly overestimates just how much land was made for you and me.


1963

The Equal Pay Act is created to gaslight women who try to argue they’re being paid less than male colleagues.

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1970

The Occupational Safety and Health Act passes, requiring employers to hang those laminated posters in the break room.

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1981-1989

Reagan. Oof.


2008

After not receiving a holiday bonus, Subway sandwich maker Mark Purcell smuggles home several pounds of sliced turkey without drawing attention from his manager.

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2025

Demanding better work conditions, Netflix’s AI stops providing users with movie recommendations.

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