Triangle Shirtwaist Fire
For workers’ rights activists and those concerned about workplace safety, the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire marks a watershed moment. The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in New York City occurred on March 25, 1911. Young immigrant women were the majority of the factory’s workforce, and they endured appalling working conditions, including overcrowded workplaces, lengthy shifts, and a lack of safety precautions.
One hundred forty-six employees were killed in the disaster because they could not escape from the upper floors because of closed exit doors and inadequate fire escapes. This tragedy served to rally the labor movement and inspire outrage among workers. It highlighted the importance of modifying existing safety policies and procedures in the workplace. Better building rules, fire safety measures, and workers’ rights were just some of the outcomes of the public outrage that followed.
The tragic events that followed the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire prompted widespread reforms to ensure the safety of workers. As a demonstration of the effectiveness of organized resistance, it left an indelible impression on the worldwide movement for workers’ rights.