Labor

LaborImage result for Labor in HRM

If the conditions in which people lived in these factory towns were considered bad, then the conditions in which they worked can be appropriately characterised as being horrendous. Inside these factories, one would find poorly ventilated, noisy, dirty, damp and poorly lighted working areas. These factories were unhealthy and dangerous places in which to work. Normally, workers put in twelve to fourteen hours daily. Factory Acts that were later enacted by Parliament regulated the number of hours that men, women and children worked. E. R. Pike’s book, Hard Times, make for interesting reading on this subject.
The factory system changed the manner in which work was performed. Unlike the domestic system, the work was away from home, in large, impersonal settings. Workers were viewed by their employers merely as “hands.”
Slowly, workers began to realise the strength they could possess if they were a unified force. It was a long, uphill battle for workers to be able to have the right to organise into officially recognised unions. Their lot was one of having no political influence in a land where the government followed a laissez-faire policy.
This hands-off policy changed as the pressure from growing trade unions increased. A movement was beginning to free workers from the injustices of the factory system. Political leaders called for reform legislation which would address these injustices (see lesson plans for specific legislation).