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Birth of Unions and Unionism. What were working conditions like in the late 1800s? Good? Who was part of the working class ? Men? Women ? Children ? Where could we find poor working conditions? What examples of poor working conditions could we find ?.

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Birth of unions and unionism
Birth of Unions and Unionism

  • Whatwereworking conditions like in the late 1800s? Good?

  • Whowas part of the working class? Men? Women? Children?

  • Wherecouldwefindpoorworking conditions?

  • Whatexamples of poorworking conditions couldwefind?

Birth of unions and unionism1
Birth of Unions and Unionism

  • Do you think workers tried to get better working conditions for themselves?

  • YES!!! How? Unions Unionism

  • Union = workers stand together to gain properworking conditions

Birth of unions and unionism2
Birth of Unions and Unionism

  • The first real unions for workersappeared in the 1820s (artisans): tailors et printers.

  • Agricultural unions in the mid 1800s

  • 1881 : Knightsof laborUnion

    • American Union that shows up in Quebec.

    • Popular for the workers but the churchwasagainstthis union.

Knights of labour hamilton 1880s
Knights of Labour-Hamilton 1880s

Birth of unions and unionism3
Birth of Unions and Unionism

  • 1886 : Workersform a proper union: C.M.T.C. (congres des métiers et du travail du Canada)

Birth of unions and unionism4
Birth of Unions and Unionism

Demands of the union :

  • Job security

  • Salary

  • Shorten the number of hours in a work day

  • Recognize the union

  • Protection for workers if there is a workplace accident (paid if hurt)

Birth of unions and unionism5
Birth of Unions and Unionism


  • Between 1850-1896 therewere more than 160 official strikes

  • A lot of strikeswererepressed by factoryowners, government like the Beauharnois strike(workersdigging a canal)

  • 20 dead workers and 40 wounded workers from the strike

Birth of unions and unionism6
Birth of Unions and Unionism

New Legislations (laws):

  • In 1872, the government of MacDonalddeclaresthat unions ARE NOT ILLEGAL

  • In 1885, first law to benefit workers (in factories especially)

  • Work week hours dropped to 60 hours a week for women

  • Work week hours dropped to 72.5 hours a week for men

Birth of unions and unionism7
Birth of Unions and Unionism

  • Minimal age for children to work:

  • Boys 12 yearsold and girls 14 yearsold

  • Permission from at least one parent in order for a child to work

  • 1886-1889 Macdonald starts a commission to investigate relationships between workers and companies