The legislation that restricts unions was sponsored by Sen. Robert Taft and Rep. Fred A. Hartley Jr. It was passed by a Republican-controlled Congress over the veto of President Harry Truman.
Taft-Hartley allows employees the right not to join unions-outlawing the closed shop-and requires advance notice of a labor strike. The government can invoke the act if it shows that a strike ``will imperil the national health or safety.'' Among its restrictions, the act provides:
* An 80-day cooling-off period during which both sides return to work.
* If no agreement is reached within the first 60 days, a second report is given to the president.
* Between days 61 and 75, workers secretly vote on their employer's last offer; the result is certified by the U.S. attorney general.
* If no accord is reached, a strike or lockout can continue.