Strike action, often simply called a strike, is a work stoppage caused by the mass refusal by employees to perform work. Employment is a Contract between two parties, one being the employer and the other being the employee. A strike usually takes place in response to employee grievances. A grievance is a wrong or hardship suffered which is the grounds of a Complaint. Strikes became important during the industrial revolution, when mass labour became important in factories and mines. The Industrial Revolution was a period in the late 18th and early 19th centuries when major changes in agriculture manufacturing and transportation had a profound effect on the A factory (previously manufactory) or manufacturing plant is an industrial Building where workers manufacture goods Mining is the extraction of valuable Minerals or other geological materials from the earth usually (but not always from an Ore body In most countries, they were quickly made illegal, as factory owners had far more political power than workers. Most western countries partially legalized striking in the late 19th or early 20th centuries.
Strikes are sometimes used to put pressure on governments to change policies. Occasionally, strikes destabilise the rule of a particular political party. A notable example is the Gdańsk Shipyard strike led by Lech Wałęsa. Gdańsk Shipyard ( Stocznia Gdańska) is a large Polish Shipyard, located in the city of Gdańsk. This strike was significant in the struggle for political change in Poland, and was an important mobilised effort that contributed to the fall of governments in communist East Europe. Poland (Polska officially the Republic of Poland
The strike tactic has a very long history. Towards the end of the 20th dynasty, under Pharaoh Ramses III in ancient Egypt in the 12th century BC, the workers of the royal necropolis organized the first known strike or workers' uprising in history. The Eighteenth Nineteenth and Twentieth Dynasties of ancient Egypt are often combined under the group title New Kingdom. Usimare Ramses III (also written Ramesses and Rameses) was the second Pharaoh of the Twentieth Dynasty and is considered to be the last great Ancient Egypt was an Ancient Civilization in eastern North Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in what is now A necropolis (plural necropoleis or necropoles) is a large Cemetery or burial place (from Greek nekropolis "city of the dead" The event was reported in detail on a papyrus at the time, which has been preserved, and is currently located in Turin. Papyrus (/pəˈpaɪrəs/ (Rhymes -aɪrəs)is a thick paper-like material produced from the Pith of the papyrus plant Cyperus papyrus  In the modern era, sailors in 1768, in support of demonstrations in London, "struck" or removed the top-gallant sails of merchant ships at port, thus crippling the ships. London ( ˈlʌndən is the capital and largest urban area in the United Kingdom.
The Mexican Constitution was the first, all over the world, that constitutionally guaranteed the right to strike, in 1917.
A list of strikes of historic significance may be found here.
Most strikes are undertaken by labor unions during collective bargaining. A trade union or labour union is an organization of workers who have banded together to achieve common goals in key areas such as wages hours and working conditions forming Collective bargaining is the process whereby workers organize together to meet converse and compromise upon the work environment with their employers The object of collective bargaining is to obtain a contract (an agreement between the union and the company,) and the contract may include a no-strike clause which prevents strikes, or penalizes the union and/or the workers if they walk out while the contract is in force. The strike is typically reserved as a threat of last resort during negotiations between the company and the union, which may occur just before, or immediately after, the contract expires.
Sometimes a union will strike rather than sign an agreement with a no-strike clause. Such an action was documented in Harlan County, USA, a video about a United Mine Workers strike. Harlan County USA is a 1976 Academy Award winning Documentary film covering the efforts of 180 Coal miners on strike against
In some industrial unions, the no-strike clause is considered controversial. Industrial unionism is a labor union organizing method through which all workers in the same industry are organized into the same union—regardless of skill or trade—thus
Generally, strikes are rare: according to the News Media Guild, 98% of union contracts in the United States are settled each year without a strike. The News Media Guild, formerly known as the Wire Service Guild is Local union 31222 of The Newspaper Guild, which is a sector of the Communications Workers of Occasionally, workers decide to strike without the sanction of a labor union, either because the union refuses to endorse such a tactic, or because the workers concerned are not unionized. Such strikes are often described as unofficial. Strikes without formal union authorization are also known as wildcat strikes.
In many countries, wildcat strikes do not enjoy the same legal protections as recognized union strikes, and may result in penalties for the union members who participate or their union. The same often applies in the case of strikes conducted without an official ballot of the union membership, as is required in some countries such as the United Kingdom. The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located
A strike may consist of workers refusing to attend work or picketing outside the workplace to prevent or dissuade people from working in their place or conducting business with their employer. Less frequently workers may occupy the workplace, but refuse either to do their jobs or to leave. This is known as a sit-down strike. A sit-down strike is a form of Civil disobedience in which an organized group of workers usually employed at a factory or other centralized location take possession of
Another unconventional tactic is work-to-rule (also known as an Italian strike, in italian Sciopero bianco), in which workers perform their tasks exactly as they are required to but no better. Work-to-rule is an Industrial action in which Employees do no more than the minimum required by the rules of a workplace and follow safety or other regulations to Italian ( or lingua italiana) is a Romance language spoken by about 63 million people as a First language, primarily in Italy. For example, workers might follow all safety regulations in such a way that it impedes their productivity or they might refuse to work overtime. Overtime is the amount of time someone works beyond normal working hours. Such strikes may in some cases be a form of "partial strike" or "slowdown"; while Italian law allows that (no one can be sanctioned for following the safety and/or security rules) such form of strike is "unprotected" in some circumstances under United States labor law, meaning that while the tactic itself is not unlawful, the employer may fire the employees who engage in it. United States labor law is a heterogeneous collection of state and federal laws Federal law not only sets the standards that govern workers' rights to organize in
A Japanese strike on the contrary has the workers maximizing their output. They are nominally working as usual, but the surplus can break the planning, especially in just-in-time systems. Just-in-time ( JIT) is an inventory strategy implemented to improve the Return on investment of a Business by reducing in-process Inventory and
During the development boom of the 1970s in Australia, the Green ban was developed by certain more socially conscious unions. A green ban is a form of Strike action, usually taken by a Trade union or other organised labour group which is conducted for environmentalist This is a form of strike action taken by a trade union or other organised labour group for environmentalist or conservationist purposes. This developed from the black ban, strike action taken against a particular job or employer in order to protect the economic interests of the strikers.
United States labor law also draws a distinction, in the case of private sector employers covered by the National Labor Relations Act, between "economic" and "unfair labor practice" strikes. United States labor law is a heterogeneous collection of state and federal laws Federal law not only sets the standards that govern workers' rights to organize in The National Labor Relations Act (or Wagner Act) is a 1935 United States federal law that protects the rights of most workers in the Private sector An employer may not fire, but may permanently replace, workers who engage in a strike over economic issues. On the other hand, employers charged with committing unfair labor practices (ULPs) may not replace employees who strike over ULPs, and must fire any strikebreakers they have hired as replacements in order to reinstate the striking workers.
Strikes may be specific to a particular workplace, employer, or unit within a workplace, or they may encompass an entire industry, or every worker within a city or country. Strikes that involve all workers, or a number of large and important groups of workers, in a particular community or region are known as general strikes. A general strike is a Strike action by a critical mass of the labour force in a city region or country Under some circumstances, strikes may take place in order to put pressure on the State or other authorities or may be a response to unsafe conditions in the workplace.
A sympathy strike is, in a way, a small scale version of a general strike in which one group of workers refuses to cross a picket line established by another as a means of supporting the striking workers. A sympathy strike is a Strike action that is initiated by workers in one industry and supported by workers in a separate but related industry or profession Sympathy strikes, once the norm in the construction industry in the United States, have been made much more difficult to conduct due to decisions of the National Labor Relations Board permitting employers to establish separate or "reserved" gates for particular trades, making it an unlawful secondary boycott for a union to establish a picket line at any gate other than the one reserved for the employer it is picketing. The United States of America —commonly referred to as the The National Labor Relations Board (or NLRB) is an Independent agency of the United States Government charged with conducting A secondary boycott is an attempt by labor to convince others to stop doing business with a particular firm because that firm does business with another firm that Sympathy strikes may be undertaken by a union as an organization or by individual union members choosing not to cross a picketline. In Britain, sympathy strikes were banned by the Thatcher government in 1980. Margaret Hilda Thatcher Baroness Thatcher LG, OM, PC, FRS (born 13 October 1925
A jurisdictional strike in United States labor law refers to a concerted refusal to work undertaken by a union to assert its members’ right to particular job assignments and to protest the assignment of disputed work to members of another union or to unorganized workers. Jurisdictional strike is a concept in United States Labor law that refers to a concerted refusal to work undertaken by a union to assert its members’ United States labor law is a heterogeneous collection of state and federal laws Federal law not only sets the standards that govern workers' rights to organize in
Employers of labor can also go on strike; either through a lock-out of workers (blocking workers from working normally, resulting in loss of wages) or through an investment strike (refusing to commit funds to maintaining or expanding production).
A student strike has the students (sometimes supported by faculty) not attending schools. A student strike occurs when students enrolled at a teaching institution such as a School, College or University refuse to go to class Unlike other strikes, the target of the protest (the educational institution or the government) does not suffer a direct economical loss but one of public image.
A Hunger strike is the voluntary refusal to eat. A hunger strike is a method of Non-violent resistance or pressure in which participants fast as an act of political Protest, or to provoke feelings of Hunger strikes are often used in prisons as a form of political protest. Like student strikes, a hunger strike aims to worsen the public image of the target.
A sickout, or (especially by uniformed police officers) blue flu, is a type of strike action in which the strikers call in sick. This is used in cases where laws prohibit certain employees from declaring a strike. Police, firefighters, and air traffic controllers are among the groups commonly barred from striking, as are teachers in some U. S. states. Workers have sometimes circumvented these restrictions by falsely claiming inability to work due to illness.
In "Marxist-Leninist" regimes, such as the former USSR or the People's Republic of China, striking is illegal and viewed as counter-revolutionary. Marxism-Leninism is a Communist ideological stream that emerged as the mainstream tendency amongst the Communist parties in the 1920s as it was adopted The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR was a constitutionally Socialist state that existed in Eurasia from 1922 to 1991 Talk People's Republic of China) PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF CHINA ARTICLE GUIDELINES A counter-revolutionary is anyone who opposes a Revolution, particularly those who act after a revolution to try to overturn or reverse it in full or in part Since the government in such systems claims to represent the working class, it has been argued that unions and strikes were not necessary. Most other totalitarian systems of the left and right also ban strikes. At one point Stalin remarked that unions were completely unnecessary, as workers would be striking against themselves. Joseph Stalin ( ნამდვილი გვარი ჯუღაშვილი|Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili; March 5 1953 was General Secretary of the Communist Party
A "minimum service" during strikes in public transport was a promise of Nicolas Sarkozy during his campaign for the French presidential election. A law "on social dialogue and continuity of public service in regular terrestrial transports of passengers" was adopted on August 12, 2007, and it took effect on January 1st, 2008
In some democratic countries, such as Mexico, strikes are legal but subject to close regulation by the state (see Mexican labor law). The United Mexican States ( or commonly Mexico (ˈmɛksɪkoʊ () is a federal constitutional Republic in North America. Mexican labor law governs the process by which workers in Mexico may organize Labor unions engage in Collective bargaining, and strike.
The Industrial Relations Act 1971 was repealed through the Trade Union and Labour Relations Act 1974, sections of which were repealed by the Employment Act 1982. The Industrial Relations Act 1971 was an Act of Parliament in the United Kingdom, since repealed The Employment Act 1982 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom (1982 c
In 2003, there was a Firefighter dispute in the United Kingdom. The 2002-2003 UK firefighter dispute began when the UK Firefighters union, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU voted to take Strike action The armed forces had to provide temporary cover, using outdated machinery. The strike action was legal under British labour law, although it was condemned by some. British labour law is that body of law which regulates the rights restrictions obligations of trade unions workers and employers in Great Britain.
The Code of Practice on Industrial Action Ballots and Notices, and sections 22 and 25 of the Employment Relations Act 2004, which concern industrial action notices, commenced on 1st October 2005.
Legislation was enacted in the aftermath of the 1919 police strikes forbidding British police from both taking industrial action and discussing the possibility with colleagues. The Police Strikes of 1918 and 1919 resulted in the British government putting before Parliament its proposals for a Police Act which established the Police Law enforcement in the United Kingdom is organised separately in Scotland, Northern Ireland, England and Wales (administration of Police matters The Police Federation created at the time to deal with employment grievances and provide representation to police officers, has increasingly put pressure on the government and repeatedly threatened strike action .
The current government is considering reintroducing the ban on strikes by prison staff, a law itself was repealed in the last decade. A prison, penitentiary, or correctional facility is a place in which individuals are physically confined or interned and usually deprived of a range of This is in the face of a proposed strike by 20,000 staff members. 
The Railway Labor Act bans strikes by United States airline and railroad employees except in narrowly defined circumstances. The Railway Labor Act is a United States federal law that governs Labor relations in the railway and Airline industries The National Labor Relations Act generally permits strikes, but provides a mechanism to enjoin strikes in industries in which a strike would create a national emergency. The federal government most recently invoked these statutory provisions to obtain an injunction against a slowdown by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union in 2002. The International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU is a labor union which primarily represents dock workers on the West Coast of the United States,
Some jurisdictions prohibit all strikes by public employees (under such laws as the "Taylor Law" in New York). The Public Employees Fair Employment Act (more commonly known as the Taylor Law) refers to Article 14 of the New York State Civil Service Law, which defines the rights New York ( is a state in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern regions of the United States and is the nation's third most populous Other jurisdictions limit strikes only by certain categories of workers, particularly those regarded as critical to society: police and firefighters are among the groups commonly barred from striking in these jurisdictions. Police are agents or agencies usually of the executive, empowered to enforce the law and to effect public and social order through the legitimatized use of force Firefighters are rescuers extensively trained primarily to put out hazardous Fires that threaten civilian populations and property to rescue people from car accidents collapsed Some states, such as Michigan, Iowa or Florida, do not allow teachers in public schools to strike. Michigan ( is a Midwestern state of the United States of America. The State of Iowa ( is a state in the Midwestern region of the United States of America. Florida ( is a state located in the southeastern region of the United States, bordering Alabama to the northwest and Georgia to the Workers have sometimes circumvented these restrictions by falsely claiming inability to work due to illness — this is sometimes called a "sickout" or "blue flu. " The term "red flu" has sometimes been used to describe this action when undertaken by firefighters.
It is also illegal for an employee of the United States Federal Government to strike. The federal government of the United States is the central United States Governmental body established by the United States Constitution. Prospective federal employees must sign standard form 61, an affidavit not to strike. Postal workers involved in 1978 wildcat strikes in Jersey City and Kearny, NJ, San Francisco, and Washington D. C. were fired under the presidency of Jimmy Carter and President Ronald Reagan terminated air traffic controllers after their refusal to return to work from an illegal strike in 1981. Air traffic controllers are people who operate the Air traffic control system to expedite and maintain a safe and orderly flow of air traffic and help prevent Template talkInfobox Union for usage --> The Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization or PATCO was
The term "scab," in the context of unions, is a highly derogatory "fighting word" that refers to people who continue to work during strike action by trade unionists. Fighting words are written or spoken words generally expressed to incite hatred or violence and to place the targets of the words in danger of harm The act of working during a strike is also known as crossing the picket line (and, often, physically requires crossing a picket line) and can result in passive and/or active retaliation against that working person. Shunning is the act of deliberately avoiding association with and habitually keeping away from an individual or group Assault is a Crime of Violence against another person. In some Jurisdictions including Australia and New Zealand, The classic example from United Kingdom industrial history is that of the miners from Nottinghamshire, who during the 1984-85 miners' strike did not support strike action by fellow mineworkers in other parts of the country. Nottinghamshire (abbreviated Notts) is an English county in the East Midlands, which borders South Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Leicestershire The miners' strike of 1984 – 1985 was a major Industrial action affecting the British coal industry. Those who supported the strike claimed that this was because they enjoyed more favourable mining conditions and thus better wages. However, the Nottinghamshire miners argued that they did not participate because the law required a ballot for a national strike and their area vote had seen around 75% vote against a strike. Irwin, Jones, McGovern (2008) believe that the term 'scab' is part of a larger metaphor involving strikes. They argue that the picket line is symbolic of a wound and those who break its borders to return to work are the scabs who bond that wound. Others have argued that the word is not a part of a larger metaphor but, rather, originates from the old-fashioned English insult, "scab. " "Blackleg" is an older word and is found in the late-nineteenth/early-twentieth century folk song from Northumberland, Blackleg Miner. Northumberland is a county in the North East of England. The non-metropolitan county of Northumberland borders Cumbria to the west Blackleg Miner is a 19th-century English Folk song, originally from Northumberland (as can be deduced from the dialect in the song and the references in The term does not necessarily owe its origins to this tune of unknown origin. The song is, however, notable for its lyrics that encourage violent acts against scabs.
People hired to replace striking workers are often derogatorily termed scabs by those in favor of the strike. The terms strike-breaker, blackleg, and scab labour are also used. Trade unionists also use the epithet, "scab," to refer to workers who are willing to accept terms that union workers have rejected and interfere with the strike action.
During "economic" strikes in the U. S. , "scabs" may be hired as permanent replacements.
The concept of union scabbing refers to any circumstance in which union workers, who normally might be expected to honor picket lines established by fellow working folk during a strike, are inclined or compelled to cross those picket lines or, in some manner, otherwise engage in workplace activity which may prove injurious to the strike. Chicago (ʃɪˈkɑːgoʊ is the largest City by population in the state of Illinois and the American Midwest of the United States.
Unionized workers are sometimes required to cross the picket lines established by other unions due to their organizations having signed contracts which include no-strike clauses. The no-strike clause typically requires that members of the union not conduct any strike action for the duration of the contract. Members who honor the picket line in spite of the contract frequently face discipline, for their action may be viewed as a violation of provisions of the contract. Therefore, any union conducting a strike action typically seeks to include a provision of amnesty for all who honored the picket line in the agreement that settles the strike.
No strike clauses may also prevent unionized workers from engaging in solidarity actions for other workers even when no picket line is crossed. For example, striking workers in manufacturing or mining produce a product which must be transported. In a situation where the factory or mine owners have replaced the strikers, unionized transport workers may feel inclined to refuse to haul any product that is produced by strikebreakers, yet their own contract obligates them to do so.
Historically the practice of union scabbing has been a contentious issue in the union movement, and a point of contention between adherents of different union philosophies. For example, supporters of industrial unions, which have sought to organize entire workplaces without regard to individual skills, have criticized craft unions for organizing workplaces into separate unions according to skill, a circumstance that makes union scabbing more common. Industrial unionism is a labor union organizing method through which all workers in the same industry are organized into the same union—regardless of skill or trade—thus Craft unionism refers to organizing a union in a manner that seeks to unify workers in a particular industry along the lines of the particular Craft or trade that they work in Union scabbing is not, however, unique to craft unions.
Most strikes called by unions are somewhat predictable; they typically occur after the contract has expired. However, not all strikes are called by union organizations — some strikes have been called in an effort to pressure employers to recognize unions. Other strikes may be spontaneous actions by working people. Spontaneous strikes are sometimes called "wildcat strikes"; most commonly, they are responses to serious (often life-threatening) safety hazards in the workplace rather than wage or hour disputes, etc.
Whatever the cause of the strike, employers are generally motivated to take measures to prevent them, mitigate the impact, or to undermine strikes when they do occur.
Companies which produce products for sale will frequently increase inventories prior to a strike. Salaried employees may be called upon to take the place of strikers, which may entail advance training. If the company has multiple locations, personnel may be redeployed to meet the needs of reduced staff.
Some companies negotiate with the union during a strike; other companies may see a strike as an opportunity to eliminate the union. This is sometimes accomplished by the importation of replacement workers, or strikebreakers. A strikebreaker (also called scab or knobstick) is a person who works despite an ongoing strike. Historically, strike breaking has often coincided with union busting.
It was also called 'Black legging' in the early 20th century, during the Russian socialist movement. 
One method of inhibiting a strike is elimination of the union that may launch it, which is sometimes accomplished through union busting. Union busting is a practice that is undertaken by an employer or their agents to prevent employees from joining a labor union, or to disempower subvert or destroy unions Union busting campaigns may be orchestrated by labor relations consultants, and may utilize the services of agencies that engage in intelligence gathering, or that provide asset protection services. The field of industrial relations (also called labor relations) looks at the relationship between Management and workers particularly groups of workers represented Labor spies are persons recruited or employed for the purpose of gathering intelligence committing sabotage sowing dissent or engaging in other similar activities typically within Similar services may be engaged during attempts to defeat organizing drives. A modern example of a union buster is The Burke Group. Union busting is a practice that is undertaken by an employer or their agents to prevent employees from joining a labor union, or to disempower subvert or destroy unions The Burke Group (TBG Labor for short is a Malibu based American Management consultancy established in 1982.
Another counter to a strike is a lockout, the form of work stoppage in which an employer refuses to allow employees to work. A lockout is a Work stoppage in which an Employer prevents employees from working Two of the three employers involved in the Caravan park grocery workers strike of 2003-2004 locked out their employees in response to a strike against the third member of the employer bargaining group. Lockouts are, with certain exceptions, lawful under United States labor law. United States labor law is a heterogeneous collection of state and federal laws Federal law not only sets the standards that govern workers' rights to organize in