What is the significant action of the United Auto Workers (UAW) in the past history?

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currerbell eNotes educator| Certified Educator

2012 marked the 75th anniversary of the formation of the UAW. Their first success came in 1937. A sit-down strike began in the auto plants of Flint, Michigan. The workers literally sat down and refused to leave. The successful strike resulted in improved workplace safety and increased wages. According to one retiree,

"The conditions for workers were terrible before the strike. There were no safety requirements, no medical help on-site. Lots of workers lost fingers and hands and some were killed. There was no compensation for the injuries or for the family if they got killed. Workers would fall and break a leg and sometimes the bosses would set them aside and make them wait before they loaded them up to get help.”