Wisconsin History Day By Day

Related Web Sites:
Wisconsin Uprising: Labor Fights Back

18,000 State Employees Strike in Wisconsin

Read More About It

"State Employees Strike" Wisconsin State Journal, July 3, 1977

"Feelings Solid on Picket Line" Wisconsin State Journal, July 6, 1977

"Strike Pack Reached" Wisconsin State Journal, July 18, 1977

"Downtown Picketers Seem Determined" The Capital Times, July 5, 1977

"State Moves to Stop Strike by Filing Unfair Labor Charge Against WSEU" The Capital Times, July 5, 1977



Interesting Fact:

There is a state law that prohibits state employees from striking.

Study Questions:

  • How did the state operate and do business during the 15-day strike? How many employees worked for the state in 1977 and what percentage belonged to the Wisconsin State Employees Union?
  • Have the state employees gone out on strike since 1977? If so, when?
  • What was the economic situation in the U.S. during 1977? What was the inflation rate at that time?

    U.S. historical events that occurred on July 3:

    1890: Idaho becomes the 43rd state.
    1898: The U.S. defeats the Spanish fleet during the Spanish-American War.

  • July 3

    July 3, 1977: The 24,000-member Wisconsin State Employees Union began an illegal strike. The 15-day strike was prompted when the state refused to submit to arbitration concerning wage increases and inflation.

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