Action Network

Join the LiUNA! Action network to get involved - it's your union! Learn more by signing up with LiUNA!

1921 - 1940

A New Direction

<> ❘ History Main ❘ Next >>


Joseph W. Moreschi becomes General President


The consolidation of Tunnel and Subway Contractors results in new jurisdiction being added: Drilling and blasting of Tunnels and Sewers, and Cellars (underground storage)

With the election of Franklin D. Roosevelt as President, a number of major Labor Laws were passed which set the tone for the way companies and Labor Unions interact today.

1931: The Davis-Bacon Act

A law to encourage and protect family-supporting wages is passed for construction workers on constructions, alterations or repairs of Federal buildings or Public Works projects under contract with the Federal government. The law requires payment by contractors and subcontractors on Federal construction projects of wages predetermined by the government, based upon the wage rates prevailing in the local area. The law continues to the present, preventing unscrupulous contractors from using public projects to force wages and community standards down.

1932: The Norris-LaGuardia Act

Guarantees Labor Unions freedom from injunctive interference by courts and declares “Yellow Dog Contracts” (agreements signed by an employee declaring that he would not join any Labor Organization or Union) contrary to public interest and makes them unenforceable. The Act also frees labor from regulation under anti-trust laws.


Membership plummets to 27,000 as The Great Depression takes its toll

1935: The Wagner Act

Congress establishes the principle that employees should be protected in their rights to organize into Labor Organizations and to collectively bargain wages and working conditions


Laborers hire 30 new organizers to rebuild membership


Membership rebounds to 101,000, while the merger with the Pavers International Union added paving-related jurisdiction: block and brick, laying of flagstone, bridge and curbstone, cross-walk, asphalt and concrete roads and streets

1938: The Fair Labor Standards Act (Wage-Hour Act)

Establishes a 25 cent per hour minimum with a boost to 40 cents in seven years, a 44-hour week to be brought down to 40 hours in 3 years, and forbids the use of child workers in industries engaged in interstate commerce