History of Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938
The growth of factories in the United States around 1900, brought about what is known as sweatshops. These sweatshops usually employed the unemployable, women, children, and newly arriving immigrants. These individuals had few employment choices and were forced to accept low wages and terrible working conditions. Social advocates of the time pushed states to enact laws to protect all workers wages, allowing all employed individuals an adequate standard of living (National, 2007).
In 1912, Massachusetts became the first state to mandate a specific wage for workers. By 1938, twenty-five states soon followed that lead with laws for their workers. ...view middle of the document...
After Congress had adjourned to avoid pocket vetoes, President Franklin D. Roosevelt endorsed and authorized 121 bills on June 25, 1938. The Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 was amid these bills. The President of the United States, F. D. Roosevelt signed into law the Fair Labor Standards Act, which came into effective on October 24, 1938. The final act pertained to organizations whose collective service signified only about one-fifth of the labor strength (Grossman, 2007). The act prohibited harsh child workforce and established the least amount hourly wage could be was 25 cents along with a ceiling of a 44-hour workweek (Grossman, 2007).
President Roosevelt circulated a President's Reemployment Agreement that would increase earnings, generate employment, and therefore rebuild commerce. Over 16.3 million employees were covered when more than 2.3 million employers signed the President’s Reemployment Agreements (Grossman, 2007). These employers reach agreement for employees to work between 35 and 40 hours at no less than $12 to $15 a week (Grossman, 2007). They also agreed not to hire or work youths less than 16 years of age.
The full force of the FLSA of 1938 was hindered by the wartime inflation of the 1940s, which raised wages above the level specified in the Act. Then in 1947, the Portal-to-Portal Act specified what time was considered compensable work time. If the work benefited the company, despite of when the work was completed the company is obligated to pay the employee for their time (Grossman, 2007).
There have been several amendments to the original act since 1938. Some of those amendments include the 1949 Fair Labor Standards Amendment that included changes in overtime compensation, extended child labor coverage and raised minimum wage from 40 cents to 75 cents per...