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Workmen’s Compensation That Preceded State Laws

The United States Steel Corporation was recognized as one of the companies at the leading edge for safety in its business operations and a contributor to advancing safety practices in the U.S. An example of the company commitment to its workers is the fact that it offered workmen’s compensation before laws required it. Below is a paragraph from a 1911 publication[12]:

For the United States Steel Corporation, we feel some pride over the fact that before a single state had established a workmen’s compensation law, we had put it into effect among two hundred thousand employees. For nearly two years every man among them has know that, if he should be injured, he would receive relief, even though his own fault caused the accident. The exact amounts and all the details of this relief regardless of legal liability were printed and distributed among the men in thirteen different languages. This plan of voluntary accident relief was authorized and put into effect, notwithstanding the knowledge that it would add half a million dollars annually to the corporation’s expenditures arising from work accidents and that it would probably hasten the adoption of workmen’s compensation in this country.


12. Ravnal C. Bolling, “Provision for the Safet;y of Employees of the United States Steel Corporation,” Human Engineering, Vol. 1, No. 4, page 211, 1911.

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