Over 25 New Jersey young workers took a step back in history during a tour of the American Labor Museum/Botto House National Landmark in Haledon. By understanding the past, young workers are developing the knowledge necessary to ensure a robust future for the labor movement. This is an ongoing theme of the New Jersey State AFL-CIO Young Workers program, and we thank Passaic County Youth Engagement in Solidarity (YES), the Passaic County CLC, the American Labor Museum, and union affiliates for making this special event possible.
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The Botto House is the location where 20,000 striking men, women and children gathered in solidarity during the 1913 Paterson Silk Strike for an eight-hour work day. The fight for the eight-hour work day was a turning point in labor history that enabled many workers to support and spend quality time with their families for the first time. However, despite this strike taking place over 100 years ago, there are clear parallels to the struggles of today’s workers, who are often unable to make ends meet even by working two or three jobs.
By learning about the sacrifices and achievements of our predecessors, young workers can better appreciate the power of collective action and realize the threat of unrestrained greed. The fight for workplace justice remains a constant struggle in our society, requiring the strength and solidarity of all workers.
Following the labor history tour, young workers also had a chance to socialize and meet their fellow union members from across various sectors of the labor movement. These connections are invaluable to fostering the solidarity that help to build the labor movement and we look forward to your continued support in promoting similar opportunities in the future.
Together we say: “Solidarity – Pass It On!”