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ADAMS v. TANNER , 244 U.S. 590 (1917)

U.S. Supreme Court

ADAMS v. TANNER , 244 U.S. 590 (1917)

244 U.S. 590

JOE ADAMS et al., Appts.,
W. V. TANNER, Attorney General of the State of Washington, and George H. Crandall, Prosecuting Attorney of Spokane County, State of Washington.
No. 273.

Argued May 7, 1917.
Decided June 11, 1917.

Messrs. Dallas V. Halverstadt, George Ferris, Edward J. Cannon, and Samuel H. Piles for appellants.

Mr. L. L. Thompson and Mr. W. V. Tanner, Attorney General of Washington, for appellees. [244 U.S. 590, 591]  

Mr. Justice McReynolds delivered the opinion of the court:

Initiative Measure Number 8-popularly known as 'The Employment Agency Law'-having been submitted to the people of Washington at the general election, received a majority vote and was thereafter declared a law, effective December 3, 1914, as provided by the state Constitution. Wash Laws 1915, chap. 1. It follows:

In Huntworth v. Tanner, 87 Wash. 670, 152 Pac. 523, the supreme court held schoolteachers were not 'workers' within the quoted measure, and that it did not apply to one conducting an agency patronized only by such teachers [244 U.S. 590, 592]   and their employers. And in State v. Rossman, 93 Wash. 530, L.R.A.1917B, 1276, 161 Pac. 349, the same court declared it did not in fact prohibit employment agencies, since they might charge fees against persons wishing to hire laborers; that it was a valid exercise of state power; that a stenographer and bookkeeper is a 'worker;' and that one who charged him a fee for furnishing information leading to employment violated the law.

As members of copartnerships and under municipal licenses, during the year 1914 and before, appellants were carrying on in the city of Spokane well established agencies for securing employment for patrons who paid fees therefor. November 25, 1914, in the United States district court, they filed their original bill against W. V. Tanner, attorney general of the state, and George H. Crandall, prosecuting attorney for Spokane county, asking that Initiative Measure Number 8 be declared void because in conflict with the 14th Amendment, Federal Constitution, and that the defendants be perpetually enjoined from undertaking to enforce it. On the same day they presented a motion for preliminary injunction, supported by affidavits which were subsequently met by countervailing ones. Appellees thereafter entered motions to dismiss the original bill because (1) 'said bill of complaint does not state facts sufficient to warrant this court in granting any relief to the plaintiffs; (2) that plaintiffs have a plain, speedy, and adequate remedy at law; (3) this court has no jurisdiction over the persons of these defendants or either of them, or the subject- matter of this action.' A temporary injunction was denied. The motions to dismiss were sustained and a final decree to that effect followed.

Considering the doctrine affirmed in Truax v. Raich, 239 U.S. 33 , 60 L. ed. 131, L.R.A.1916D, 545, 36 Sup. Ct. Rep. 7, and cases there cited, the record presents no serious question in respect of jurisdiction.

The bill alleges 'that the employment business con- [244 U.S. 590, 593]   sists in securing places for persons desiring to work,' and unless permitted to collect fees from those asking assistance to such end the business conducted by appellants cannot succeed and must be abandoned. We think this conclusion is obviously true. As paid agents their duty is to find places for their principals. To act in behalf of those seeking workers is another and different service, although, of course, the same individual may be engaged in both. Appellants' occupation as agent for workers cannot exist unless the latter pay for what they receive. To say it is not prohibited because fees may be collected for something done in behalf of other principals is not good reasoning. The statute is one of prohibition, not regulation. 'You take my house when you do take the prop that doth sustain my house; you take my life when you do take the means whereby I live.'

We have held employment agencies are subject to police regulation and control. 'The general nature of the business is such that, unless regulated, many persons may be exposed to misfortunes against which the legislature can properly protect them.' Brazee v. Michigan, 241 U.S. 340, 343 , 60 S. L. ed. 1034, 1036, 36 Sup. Ct. Rep. 561. But we think it plain that there is nothing inherently immoral or dangerous to public welfare in acting as paid representative of another to find a position in which he can earn an honest living. On the contrary, such service is useful, commendable, and in great demand. In Spokane v. Macho, 51 Wash. 322, 324, 21 L.R.A.(N.S.) 263, 130 Am. St. Rep. 1100, 98 Pac. 755, the supreme court of Washington said: 'It cannot be denied that the business of the employment agent is a legitimate business; as much so as is that of the banker, broker, or merchant; and under the methods prevailing in the modern business world it may be said to be a necessary adjunct in the prosecution of business enterprises.' Concerning the same subject, Ex parte Dickey, 144 Cal. 234, 236, 66 L.R.A. 928, 103 Am. St. Rep. 82, 77 Pac. 924, 1 Ann. Cas. 428, the supreme court of California said: 'The business in which this defendant is engaged is not only innocent and [244 U.S. 590, 594]   innocuous, but is highly beneficial, as tending the more quickly to secure labor for the unemployed. There is nothing in the nature of the business, therefore, that in any way threatens or endangers the public health, safety, or morals.' And this conclusion is fortified by the action of many states in establishing free employment agencies charged with the duty to find occupation for workers.

It is alleged: 'That plaintiffs have furnished positions for approximately ninety thousand persons during the last year, and have received applications for employment from at least two hundred thousand laborers, for whom they have been unable to furnish employment. . . . That such agencies have been established and conducted for so long a time that they are now one of the necessary means whereby persons seeking employment are able to secure the same.' A suggestion in behalf of the state, that while a pursuit of this kind 'may be beneficial to some particular individuals or in specific cases, economically it is certainly nonuseful, if not vicious, because it compels the needy and unfortunate to pay for that which they are entitled to without fee or price, that is, the right to work,' while possibly indicative of the purpose held by those who originated the legislation, in reason, gives it no support.

Because abuses may, and probably do, grow up in connection with this business, is adequate reason for hedging it about by proper regulations. But this is not enough to justify destruction of one's right to follow a distinctly useful calling in an upright way. Certainly there is no profession, possibly no business, which does not offer peculiar opportunities for reprehensible practices; and as to every one of them, no doubt, some can be found quite ready earnestly to maintain that its suppression would be in the public interest. Skilfully directed agitation might also bring about apparent condemnation of any one of them by the public. Happily for all, the [244 U.S. 590, 595]   fundamental guaranties of the Constitution cannot be freely submerged if and whenever some ostensible justification is advanced and the police power invoked.

The general principles by which the validity of the challenged measure must be determined have been expressed many times in our former opinions. It will suffice to quote from a few.

In Allgeyer v. Louisiana, 165 U.S. 578, 589 , 41 S. L. ed. 832, 835, 17 Sup. Ct. Rep. 427, we held invalid a statute of Louisiana which undertook to prohibit a citizen from contracting outside the state for insurance on his property lying therein because it violated the liberty guaranteed to him by the 14th Amendment. 'The liberty mentioned in that Amendment means not only the right of the citizen to be free from the mere physical restraint of his person, as by incarceration, but the term is deemed to embrace the right of the citizen to be free in the enjoyment of all his faculties; to be free to use them in all lawful ways; to live and work where he will; to earn his livelihood by any lawful calling; to pursue any livelihood or avocation, and for that purpose to enter into all contracts which may be proper, necessary, and essential to his carrying out to a successful conclusion the purposes above mentioned.'

We are of opinion that Initiative Measure Number 8, as [244 U.S. 590, 597]   constructed by the supreme court of Washington, is arbitrary and oppressive, and that it unduly restricts the liberty of appellants, guaranteed by the 14th Amendment, to engage in a useful business. It may not therefore be enforced against them.

The judgment of the court below is reversed and the cause remanded for further proceedings in conformity with this opinion.


Mr. Justice McKenna dissents upon the ground that, under the decisions of this court,-some of them so late as to require no citation or review,-the law in question is a valid exercise of the police power of the state, directed against a demonstrated evil.

Mr. Justice Brandeis, dissenting:

To declare the statute of a state, enacted in the exercise of the police power, invalid under the 14th Amendment, is a matter of such seriousness that I state the reasons for my dissent from the opinion of the court.

The statute of the state of Washington, commonly known as the 'Abolishing Employment Offices Measure,' was proposed by Initiative Petition No. 8, filed July 3, 1914, and was adopted November 3, 1914, at the general election; 162,054 votes being cast for the measure and 144,544 against it. In terms the act merely prohibits the taking of fees from those seeking employment. 1   [244 U.S. 590, 598]   Plaintiffs, who are proprietors of private employment agencies in the city of Spokane, assert that this statute, if enforced, would compel them to discontinue business and would thus, in violation of the 14th Amendment, deprive them of their liberty and property without due process of law. The act leaves the plaintiffs free to collect fees from employers; and it appears that private employment offices thus restricted are still carrying on business. 2 But even if it should prove, as plaintiffs allege, that their business could not live without collecting fees [244 U.S. 590, 599]   from employees, that fact would not necessarily render the act invalid. Private employment agencies are a business properly subject to police regulation and control. Brazee v. Michigan, 241 U.S. 340 , 60 L. ed. 1034, 36 Sup. Ct. Rep. 561. And this court has made it clear that a statute enacted to promote health, safety, morals, or the public welfare may be valid, although it will compel discontinuance of existing businesses in whole or in part. Statutes prohibiting the manufacture and sale of liquor present the most familiar example of such a prohibition. But where, as here, no question of interstate commerce is involved, this court has sustained also statutes or municipal ordinances which compelled discontinuance of such business as (a) of manufacturing and selling oleomargarin (Powell v. Pennsylvania, 127 U.S. 678 , 32 L. ed. 253, 8 Sup. Ct. Rep. 992, 1257); (b) of selling cigarettes (Austin v. Tennessee, 179 U.S. 343 , 45 L. ed. 224, 21 Sup. Ct. Rep. 132); (c) of selling futures in grain or other commodities (Booth v. Illinois, 184 U.S. 425 , 46 L. ed. 623, 22 Sup. Ct. Rep. 425); (d) of selling stocks on margin (Otis v. Parker, 187 U.S. 606 , 47 L. ed. 323, 23 Sup. Ct. Rep. 168); (e) of keeping billiard halls (Murphy v. California, 225 U.S. 623 , 56 L. ed. 1229, 41 L.R.A.(N.S.) 153, 32 Sup. Ct. Rep. 697); (f) of selling trading stamps (Rast v. Van Deman & L. Co. 240 U.S. 342, 368 , 60 S. L. ed. 679, 691, L.R.A.1917A, 421, 36 Sup. Ct. Rep. 370).

These cases show that the scope of the police power is not limited to regulation as distinguished from prohibition. They show also that the power of the state exists equally, whether the end sought to be attained is the promotion of health, safety, or morals, or is the prevention of fraud or the prevention of general demoralization. 'If the state thinks that an admitted evil cannot be prevented except by prohibiting a calling or transaction not in itself necessarily objectionable, the courts cannot interfere, unless in looking at the substance of the matter, they can see that it 'is a cear, unmistakable infringement of rights secured by the fundamental law." Otis v. Parker, 187 U.S. 606, 609 , 47 S. L. ed. 323, 327, 23 Sup. Ct. Rep. 168; Booth v. Illinois, 184 U.S. 425, 429 , 46 S. L. ed. 623, 626, 22 Sup. Ct. Rep. 425. Or, as it is so frequently expressed, the action of the legislature is final, unless the measure adopted appears clearly to be arbitrary [244 U.S. 590, 600]   or unreasonable, or to have no real or substantial relation to the object sought to be attained. Whether a measure relating to the public welfare is arbitrary or unreasonable, whether it has no substantial relation to the end proposed, is obviously not to be determined by assumptions or by a priori reasoning. The judgment should be based upon a consideration of relevant facts, actual or possible-Ex facto jus oritur. That ancient rule must prevail in order that we may have a system of living law.

It is necessary to inquire, therefore: What was the evil which the people of Washington sought to correct? Why was the particular remedy embodied in the statute adopted? And, incidentally, what has been the experience, if any, of other states or countries in this connection? But these inquiries are entered upon, not for the purpose of determining whether the remedy adopted was wise, or even for the purpose of determining what the facts actually were. The decision of such questions lies with the legislative branch of the government. Powell v. Pennsylvania, 127 U.S. 678, 685 , 32 S. L. ed. 253, 256, 8 Sup. Ct. Rep. 992, 1257. The sole purpose of the inquiries is to enable this court to decide whether, in view of the facts, actual or possible, the action of the state of Washington was so clearly arbitrary or so unreasonable that it could not be taken 'by a free government without a violation of fundamental rights.' See McCray v. United States, 195 U.S. 27, 64 , 49 S. L. ed. 78, 99, 24 Sup. Ct. Rep. 769, 1 Ann. Cas. 561.

1. The evils. 3  

The evils with which the people of Washington were confronted arose partly from the abuses incident to the [244 U.S. 590, 601]   system of private employment agencies and partly from its inadequacy.

(a) The abuses.

These are summarized in a report published by the United States Bureau of Labor in October, 1912,4 thus:

In the report to Congress of the United States Commission on Industrial Relations, created by Act of August 23, 1912 (chap. 351, 37 Stat. at L. 415, Comp. Stat. 1916, 8913), which gave public hearings on the subject of employment offices in May, 1914, the abuses are found to be as follows:5

(b) The inadequacy.

But the evils were not limited to what are commonly called abuses- like the fraud and extortion described above. Even the exemplary private offices charging fees to workers might prove harmful, for the reason thus stated in the report to Congress of the United States Commission on Industrial Relations, cited supra. [244 U.S. 590, 604]  

2. The remedies.

During the fifteen years preceding 1914 there had been extensive experimentation in the regulation of private employment agencies. Twenty- four states had attempted direct regulation under statutes, often supplemented by municipal ordinances. 6 Nineteen states had attempted indirect regulation through the competition of state offices, and seven others through competition of municipal [244 U.S. 590, 606]   offices. 7 Other experiments in indirect regulation through competition petition were made by voluntary organizations, philanthropic, social, and industrial. 8 The results of those experiments were unsatisfactory. The abuses continued in large measure; and the private offices survived to a great extent the competition of the free agencies, public and private. There gradually developed a conviction that the evils of private agencies were inherent and ineradicable, so long as they were permitted to charge fees to the workers seeking employment. And many believed that such charges were the root of the evil.

On September 25, 1914, the American Association of Public Employment Offices adopted at its annual meeting the following resolutions:

The United States Commission on Industrial Relations declared in its report to Congress:9

But the remedies proposed were not limited to the suppression of private offices charging fees to workers, and the extension of the system of state and municipal offices. The conviction became widespread that, for the solution of the larger problem of unemployment, the aid of the Federal government and the utilization and development of its extensive machinery was indispensable. During the seven years preceding 1914 a beginning had been made in this respect. The Immigration Act of February 20, 1907 (chap. 1134, 34 Stat. at L. 898, 909, Comp. Stat. 1916, 4242, 960), created within the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization a Division of Information, charged with the duty of promoting 'a beneficial distribution of aliens.' The services rendered by this division included, among others, some commonly performed by employment agencies. While it undertook to place in positions of employment only aliens, its operations were national in scope. The Act of March 4, 1913, creating the Department of Labor, resulted in a transfer of the Bureau of Immigration, including the Division of Information, to that department. 37 Stat. at L. 736, chap. 141, Comp. Stat. 1916, 932. By this transfer the scope of the division's work was enlarged to correspond with the broad powers of the Labor Department. These were declared by Congress to be:

Then its efforts 'to distribute' (that is both to supply and to find places for) labor were extended to include citizens as well as aliens; and much was done to develop the machinery necessary for such distribution. In the summer of 1914, and in part before the filing in the state of Washington of the proposal for legislation here in question, action had been taken by the Department of Labor which attracted public attention. It undertook to supply harvest hands needed in the Middle West and also to find work for the factory hands thrown out of employment by the great fire at Salem, Massachusetts, June 25, 1914.10 The division was strengthened by co-operation with other departments of the Federal government (Agriculture, Interior, Commerce, and the Postoffice, with its 60,000 local offices) and with state and municipal employment offices. As early as June 13, 1914, the United States Department of Labor had also sought the co-operation in this work of all the leading newspapers in America, including those printed in foreign languages. 11   [244 U.S. 590, 609]   3. Conditions in the state of Washington.

The peculiar needs of Washington emphasized the derects of the system of private employment offices.

(a) The evils.

The conditions generally prevailing are described in a report recently published by the United States Department of Labor, thus:12

The necessity laid upon so many workers of constantly seeking new jobs opens a peculiarly fertile field for their exploitation by unscrupulous private employment agencies. There is much testimony to the fact and frequency of such exploitation. The most striking evidence of this is that in the state of Washington private agencies made themselves so generally distrusted that in 1915 their complete abolition was ordered by popular vote. . . .

Prior to 1914 there was practically no legislation regarding private employment agencies, and there had been no attempt at state supervision of their conduct. But [244 U.S. 590, 610]   distrust of such agencies was constantly increasing and culminated in the year mentioned in the passage by popular initiative of an act aiming at the total suppression of all private employment agencies of the commercial type.'

The reports of the Washington State Bureau of Labor give this description:

The abuses and the inadequacy of the then existing system are also described by state officials in affidavits included in the record.

(b) The remedies.

Washington had not tried direct regulation of private employment offices, but that method was being considered as late as 1912.15 Its people had had, on the other hand, exceptional opportunities of testing public employment offices. The municipal employment office established at Seattle in 1894 under an amendment of the city charter is among the oldest public offices in the United States. Takoma established a municipal office in 1904, Spokane in 1905, and Everett in 1908.16 The continuance and increase of these municipal offices indicate that their experience in public employment agencies was at least encouraging. And the low cost of operating them was extraordinary. In Spokane the fees charged by private agencies ranged from $1 upward, and were usually about [244 U.S. 590, 612]   $2.17 In the Seattle free municipal agency the cost of operation, per position filed, was reduced to a trifle over 4 cents. 18 The preliminary steps for establishing 'Distribution Stations' under the Federal system, including one at Seattle, had been taken before the passage of the Washington law. 19 Later branch offices were established in thirteen other cities. 20   [244 U.S. 590, 613]   4. The fundamental problem.

The problem which confronted the people of Washington was far more comprehensive and fundamental than that of protecting workers applying to the private agencies. It was the chronic problem of unemployment,-perhaps the gravest and most difficult problem of modern industry,-the problem which, owing to business depression, was the most acute in America during the years 1913 to 1915.21 In the state of Washington the suffering from unemployment was accentuated by the lack of staple industries operating continuously throughout the year and by unusual fluctuations in the demand for labor, with consequent reduction of wages and increase of social unrest. 22 Students of the larger problem of unemployment appear to agree that establishment of an adequate system of employment offices or labor exchanges23 is an in- [244 U.S. 590, 614]   dispensable first step toward its solution. There is reason to believe that the people of Washington not only considered the collection by the private employment offices of fees from employees a social injustice,24 but that they considered the elimination of the practice a necessary [244 U.S. 590, 615]   preliminary to the establishment of a constructive policy for dealing with the subject of unemployment. 25  

It is facts and considerations like these which may have led the people of Washington to prohibit the collection by employment agencies of fees from applicants for work. And weight should be given to the fact that the statute has been held constitutional by the supreme court of Washington and by the Federal district court (three judges sitting),- courts presumably familiar with the local conditions and needs.

In so far as protection of the applicant is a specific pur- [244 U.S. 590, 616]   pose of the statute, a precedent was furnished by the Act of Congress, December 21, 1898, 30 Stat. at L. 755, 763, chap. 28, Comp. Stat. 1916, 8306, 8323 (considered in Patterson v. The Eudora, 190 U.S. 169 , 47 L. ed. 1002, 23 Sup. Ct. Rep. 821), which provides, among other things:

In so far as the statute may be regarded as a step in the effort to overcome industrial maladjustment and unemployment by shifting to the employer the payment of fees, if any, the action taken may be likened to that embodied in the Washington Workmen's Compensation Law (sustained in Mountain Timber Co. v. Washington, 243 U.S. 219 , 61 L. ed. 685, 37 Sup. Ct. Rep. 260), whereby the financial burden of industrial accidents is required to be borne by the employers.

As was said in Holden v. Hardy, 169 U.S. 366, 387 , 42 S. L. ed. 780, 789, 18 Sup. Ct. Rep. 383.

In my opinion, the judgment of the District Court should be affirmed.

Mr. Justice Holmes and Mr. Justice Clarke concur in this dissent.


[ Footnote 1 ] 'An Act to Prohibit the Collection of Fees for the Securing of Employment, or Furnishing Information Leading Thereto, and Fixing a Penalty for Violation Thereof.

The supreme court of Washington has twice passed upon the scope of the act; holding in Huntsworth v. Tanner, 87 Wash. 670, 152 Pac. 523, that it is not applicable to teachers, and in State v. Rossman, 93 Wash. 530, L. R.A. 1917B, 1276, 161 Pac. 349, that it is applicable to stenographers and bookkeepers.

[ Footnote 2 ] See Report of the State of Washington Bureau of Labor (1915, 1916), pp. 120, 121.

[ Footnote 3 ] The evils incident to private employment agencies first arrested public attention in America about 1890. During the fifteen years preceding the enactment of the Washington law there were repeated investigations, official and unofficial, and there was much discussion and experimentation. See Free Public Employment Offices in the United States; U. S. Bureau of Labor, Bulletin No. 68, p. 1; Statistics of Unemployment and the Work of Employment Offices, U. S. Bureau of Labor Bulletin 109, p. 5; Subject Index of the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bulletin No. 174, pp. 85-87; Munro, Bibliography of Municipal Government, pp. 379-381.

[ Footnote 4 ] United States Bureau of Labor Bulletin No. 109, p. 36.

[ Footnote 5 ] Final Report and Testimony submitted to Congress by the Commission on Industrial Relations created by the Act of August 23, 1912, 64th Congress, 1st Session, Doc. 415, vol. 1, pp. 109-111. See also vol. 2. pp. 1165-1440.

[ Footnote 6 ] 'It is not necessary here to enter into the relative merits of governmental regulation and governmental operation. Suffice it to say that twenty-four states and the District of Columbia have attempted to regulate private employment agencies and have made a miserable failure of it. The business lends itself easily to fraud and imposition, and it is far more true of the private agencies than of the public offices that they have been frauds as well as failures.'

Public Employment Offices-W. M. Leiserson, 29 Political Science Quarterly (March, 1914), p. 36.

[ Footnote 7 ] Proceedings of the Association of Public Employment Offices ( September 25, 1914), U. S. Dep. of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bulletin 192, p. 61.

[ Footnote 8 ] Unemployment and Work of Employment Offices, Bulletin of U. S. Bureau of Labor No. 109, pp. 5, 37 (October, 1912).

[ Footnote 9 ] Made in August, 1915, and cited supra, Note 4. Between 1914 and this date six states had legislated on the subject. See Unemployment Survey, 1914, 1915. 5 American Labor Legislation Review, p. 560.

[ Footnote 10 ] The fire was so extensive that the Congress appropriated $200,000 for relief of all sufferers (Act of August 1, 1914, chap. 223, 38 Stat. at L. 681).

[ Footnote 11 ] Annual Report of the Secretary of Labor, 1914, pp. 48-55; Monthly Review of the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, July, 1915, p. 8; see also Annual Report of the Secretary of Labor, 1915, p. 36; 'Interdepartmental co-operation.-Through the co-operation of the Postoffice Department it became possible to bring to the aid of this labor-distribution service some 60,000 postoffices and thereby to create a network of communication between employers needing help without knowing where to get it and workers wanting employment without knowing where to find it. Either employer or workman may obtain at any postoffice in the United States a blank application supplied by this department, which, after filling out and signing it, he may deposit in the mails anywhere, free of postage.' 'Employment bulletins.-The bulletins contain a statement of unmatched applications, no matter what part of the country they may come from. It is not expected, of course, that applications for work of a minor character will ordinarily be matched by applications for workers of that kind from distant stations. It is assumed, however, that bulletined applications may possibly be matched through the co-operation of near-by stations within a reasonable radius. The bulletins are also systematically sent to such newspapers as have indicated their desire to receive them for possible publication as news matter of interest to their respective readers.'

[ Footnote 12 ] Labor Laws and their Administration in the Pacific States. United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Bulletin No. 211 (1917), pp. 17, 18.

[ Footnote 13 ] Washington State Bureau of Labor, Report 1913, 1914, pp. 27, 28.

[ Footnote 14 ] Washington State Bureau of Labor, Report 1915, 1916, p. 120.

[ Footnote 15 ] Washington State Bureau of Labor, 1911-1912. Report of Commissioner, p. 16: 'It has been demonstrated that state control of employment agencies is the most effective way to properly regulate them. I would earnestly recommend a state law similar to the one in Illinois that went into effect July 1, 1911, and has proven to be the best law for this purpose in this country.'

[ Footnote 16 ] The first free public employment office in the United States was the municipal agency established in Cleveland in 1890. Then followed (in 1893) the Los Angeles office. Bulletin of United States Bureau of Labor No. 68, p. 1. (Jan. 1907).

[ Footnote 17 ] Washington State Bureau of Labor Report 1913, 1914, p. 291.

W. D. Wheaton, Labor Agent.-'The complaint against the private office is almost universal. The experience of this office is that private agencies charge all that the traffic will bear and that in hard times, when work is scarce and the worker poverty-stricken, the fee is placed so high as to be almost prohibitive, and the agencies take longer chances, sometimes sending men on only a rumor, depending on their financial straits to make it impossible to return.

[ Footnote 18 ] United States Bureau of Labor Bulletin No. 109, p. 136.

[ Footnote 19 ] See Report of Secretary of Labor, 1914, p. 51.

[ Footnote 20 ] 'Aberdeen, Bellingham, Custer, Everett, Friday Harbor, Lynden, Noosack, North Yakima, Port Angeles, Port Townsend, Spokane, Takoma, Walla Walla. Monthly Review of U. S. Labor Statistics, July, 1915, p. 9. See Report of Secretary of Labor, 1915, p. 36; 1916, p. 54. Hearings Committee on Labor, on H. R. 5783, to establish a National Employment Bureau. 64th Cong. 1st Session, February, 1916, p. 49.

[ Footnote 21 ] The Unemployment Crisis of 1914, 1915, 5 American Labor Legislation Review, p. 475.

[ Footnote 22 ] Washington State Bureau of Labor Report, 1913, 1914, pp. 13, 16, 17. Unemployment Survey, 5 American Labor Legislation Review, 482, 483 ( 1915).

[ Footnote 23 ] Recent Advances in the Struggle against Unemployment, by Prof. Charles R. Henderson, 2 American Labor Legislation Review, 105, 106 (1911). 'The point of starting ameliorative effort is the employment agency or 'labor exchange."

A Problem of Industry, 4 American Labor Legislation Review, p. 211:

The Prevention of Unemployment, 5 American Labor Legislation Review, p. 176:

Public Employment Bureaus, Charles B. Barnes, 5 American Labor Legislation Review, p. 195:

The unemployed in Philadelphia, Department of Public Works (1915) p. 113.

What is done for the Unemployed in European Countries, U. S. Bureau of Labor Bulletin, No. 76, pp. 741-934; The British System of Labor Exchanges, U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, No. 206.

[ Footnote 24 ] Washington State Employment Agency Referendum, by W. M. Leiserson, 33 Survey, 87 (October 24, 1914):

[ Footnote 25 ] General Discussion on Unemployment, 5 American Labor Legislation Review, p. 451; T. S. McMahon, Univ. of Washington.

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