Racket: In 1970, Minneapolis Teachers Risked it All, Broke the Law, and Went on Strike

The complex and dramatic history of an illegal teachers’ strike that forever altered labor relations and Minnesota politicsIf Minneapolis teachers go on strike this year, it will be the first time they’ve done so since 1970. And unlike the last time around, it will be legal for them to do it.

In his forthcoming book Strike! Twenty Days in 1970 When Minneapolis Teachers Broke the Law, historian, professor, and former superintendent of the Minneapolis Public Schools Bill Green takes a look at a watershed moment for labor in Minneapolis and in Minnesota. The legislature had passed a law banning public employees from striking in the 1950s, and in going on strike that April, teachers risked everything: their jobs, their pensions, their futures.

We spoke with Green about the bravery of these teachers and their ultimate victory, which forever changed the city’s politics and gave educators the right to collective bargaining.

Read the interview at Racket. 

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