LABOR: Pressure Gauge

After months of increasing pressure, the floor under wages began to buckle last week. In Congress, there were three loud, warning crackles.

Into Senate and House hoppers went identical bills amending the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, lifting its 40¢minimum hourly wage to 65¢ (and to 75¢after two years). The work week would drop to 40 hours when 75¢ was reached. Industry committees, under special circumstances, could drive basic pay rates upward even faster.

Three days earlier, a Senate labor subcommittee had called on the War Labor Board to regard all wages below 65¢ (instead of 55¢, as at present)...

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