A simple definition of labor found in the Merriam-Webster dictionary is “the services performed by workers for wages”. However, in practice labor is anything but simple. Issues in labor relations and rights are inherently intersectional. Whether it be with civil rights as seen through the work of Minnesotan Nellie Stone Johnson, with issues surrounding migrant workers from the Southern U.S. and from Central America, with feminism and women’s rights as seen in stories such as those of Eva McDonald there is no questioning that the issues surrounding labor in Minnesota flux in tandem with many other issues of identity, class, and ideology.
June 3, 1973 - Part five of the MER documentary series, A Sense of Place. Program is titled “Mining, Music and Much Ado about Sports”, exploring the relationship between a miner and the giant corporation he works for.
September 4, 1973 - MPR’s Dulcie Lawrence interviews labor movement leaders Myrtle Harris, Nellie Stone Johnson and Ann Lewis. The three talk about changes unions have brought about for women in the American workplace.
June 6, 1974 - MPR’s Conie Goldman reports on The Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW), which recently organized to promote equity for women in the workplace. At their first conference, 58 unions of rank and file female workers participated.
July 17, 1975 - MPR’s Rachel Kranz speaks with John Neuman, of the pilot association, who expresses regret on the part of pilot group that a strike might be an inevitable outcome. There are concerns over long term ramifications for Northwest and union if strike is a long term affair. The union is at issue with work conditions and pension pay.
November 7, 1977 - A report on the march and rally in support of striking steelworkers held in Virginia, Minnesota. Includes a sound portrait and interviews with members of rally. Among the speakers were Lloyd McBride, president of the International Steelworkers Union.
March 8, 1978 - MPR’s Rachel Kranz presents report on the history and experiences of women in the labor movement.
July 10, 1978 - As part of an Insight series, MPR’s John Ydstie produces a sound portrait titled “Migrant Series, Part 1.” Ydstie follows the daily life of Guillermo Flores, a migrant worker in the sugar beet fields of rural Minnesota.
July 27, 1979 - Cesar Chavez, president of the United Farm Workers, speaking at College of Saint Teresa’s Institute on Justice. The theme was “Attaining Justice Through Compassionate Leadership."
April 24, 1980 - MPR’s Dan Olson interviews Bonnie Watkins, staff member of the Minnesota Council on the Economic Status of Women; and Carol Flynn, an organizer for the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME). Watkins and Flynn discuss problems faced by office workers and efforts to organize the predominately female clerical workers. Topics include pay inequality, sexual discrimination, and vague job descriptions. Both also answer listener questions.
September 3, 1983 - MPR’s Dan Olson interviews Dave Roe, President of the Minnesota AFL-CIO (American Federation of Labor - Congress of Industrial Organizations). Roe discusses recent developments in organized labor and answers listener questions. Program begins with commentary from Roe on shooting down of commercial South Korean airliner by Soviet Union days earlier.