Vanderbilt Law Review

First Page



The recent demands of the CIO unions for the guaranteed annual wage have aroused considerable interest in this issue among those concerned with labor-management relations. Several factors have accentuated this interest. First, during 1954 when these demands were being pressed with considerable vigor, a recession had developed,resulting in a considerable increase in unemployment levels. Second, these demands were made on mass production industries manufacturing durable goods which are subject to wide variations in demand and output during periods of cyclical change. Third, the recent proposals are taking a form quite different from the existing plans, namely, they propose an integration with the nation-wide unemployment insurance system. Fourth, the guaranteed annual wage is being offered as a significant approach to the problem of depression unemployment during a period in bur history when the national government is already committed to a policy of maintaining high level employment and utilizing all means available to attain that end. Finally, demands for the guaranteed annual wage come at a time when the economy is served by a nation-wide unemployment insurance system which has been in effective operation for the past 15 years.