International Ladies Garment Workers Union

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International Ladies Garment Workers Union

(ILGWU), former U.S. labor union, formed in 1900 by the amalgamation of seven local unions. At the turn of the century most of the workers in the garment industry were Jewish immigrants, whose attempts at organization were hampered by clashes between anarchists and socialists; this heritage of strife was carried over into the ILGWU, and in its early years many members were sympathetic to various radical movements. Despite these conflicts the union grew rapidly in its first years. However, the depression of 1903 and the open-shop campaign launched by the newly formed National Association of Manufacturers wiped out many hard-won gains.

By 1908 it appeared as if the union might be merged with the United Garment Workers, then the American Federation of Labor (AFL) union of men's tailors. At that point the union launched two spectacular and successful mass strikes (1909–11) in the garment district of New York City. As a result of the strikes, the dress manufacturers agreed to deal with the ILGWU and its affiliates. That settlement also embodied the famous Protocol of Peace, which was proposed by Louis D. BrandeisBrandeis, Louis Dembitz
, 1856–1941, associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court (1916–39), b. Louisville, Ky., grad. Harvard law school, 1877. As a successful Boston lawyer (1879–1916), Brandeis distinguished himself by investigating insurance practices and by
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 and was based on the concept of perpetual economic peace in the union. Although that concept was in sharp contrast to the radical trade-union philosophy then prevailing among garment workers, it served as a model of cooperation between labor and management.

The Communists' drive for control of the union during the 1920s was defeated by moderates under the leadership of David DubinskyDubinsky, David
, 1892–1982, American labor leader, president (1932–66) of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU), b. Brest-Litovsk, Poland. He was a baker in his father's shop in Lodz (then in Russian Poland), and after becoming active in the bakers'
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. Although the struggle seriously hurt the ILGWU, the union benefited from the labor policies of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and membership rose to 300,000 in 1942. In 1937 the ILGWU briefly joined the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO); it then temporarily became an independent union and finally rejoined the AFL in 1940. Under the presidency of Dubinsky, the ILGWU grew into one of the nation's most powerful and progressive unions, with a wide range of member benefits. The ILGWU gained the respect of the manufacturers by its willingness to assist employers in the industry with loans and technical assistance. Dubinsky retired in 1966. The following year a $1 million Dubinsky Foundation was established, with the goal of making grants to causes and institutions in line with ILGWU objectives.

From 1968 to the early 1990s the union lost more than 300,000 workers as a result of low cost imports and the transfer of factories overseas. In 1995 the 125,000-member ILGWU merged with the 175,000-member Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers' Union to form the Union of Needletrades, Industrial and Textile Employees (UNITE). UNITE merged in 2004 with HERE (the Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees International Union) to Unite Here. Five years later union officials largely representing the former UNITE voted to secede from the larger group and, as Workers United, affiliate with the Service Employees International UnionService Employees International Union
(SEIU), labor union representing U.S. and Canadian workers in health care (doctors, nurses, health technicians), public services (government workers, school employees), building services (janitors, elevator operators, security officers) and
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See L. L. Lorwin, The Women's Garment Workers (1924); B. Stolberg, Tailor's Progress (1944); M. D. Danish, The World of David Dubinsky (1957); G. Tyler, Look for the Union Label (1998).

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References in periodicals archive ?
The original garment industry, with its ties to the large-scale influx of poor European immigrants at the turn of the century, was organized by the International Ladies Garment Workers Union and the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union during the 1930s.
So from 1910 through the 1920s, with varying degrees of success, both the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (I.L.G.W.U.) and the Amalgamated Clothing Workers union (A.C.W.)-along with manufacturing firms willing to cooperate-experimented with "impartial" grievance and arbitration boards, wage-scale and price boards.
On the other hand he infuriated SDS's original parent organization, a rabidly anti-Stalinist branch of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union, for consistently refusing to issue blanket condemnations of the Soviet Union.
Eventually, the Italian women joined one of the three garment unions that survived the 1919 Red Scare's antiradical fervor--the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America, the United Garment Workers Union, or the International Ladies Garment Workers Union.
She had been a member of The International Ladies Garment Workers Union. She was a loving, caring woman, who enjoyed times spent with her family and friends.
(20.) Corinne Gelb, interviewer, Jennie Matyas and the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (University of California Institute of Industrial Relations Oral History Project, Berkeley 1957); "Labor Strike in Chinatown, Official Statements of Parties Involved," 10-11 in Chinese Digest, April 1938.
This vision of the proper workplace was, according to Bender, ultimately embraced by the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU) and, after 1910, became the objective of the Joint Board of Sanitary Control (JBSC)--an organization of factory inspectors and union leaders charged with regulating working conditions in the garment industry.
Joseph was a physician and assistant to the director at the International Ladies Garment Workers Union Health Center.
Part of labor organizer Chester Chew's report follows: International Ladies Garment Workers Union does have some 1200 Chinese members with approximately 700 working in Chinatown.
That is also true of the Penn South garage on West 26th Street, where this reporter is aware of multiple leaks nearly since the International Ladies Garment Workers Union project was opened in 1963 with a dedication by then President John F.

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