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SPLATTER! SPLATTER! SPLATTER! Workers' Health and the Spray Machine Debate

A conflict between industrialization and worker health developed in the painting industry during the early 1900s with the introduction of the spray machine. This technological innovation allowed the application of paint at greater speed and lower cost than hand painting and increased the rate at which painters were exposed to lead and other toxins contained in paint. From roughly 1919 to 1931, the painters’ trade union clashed with employers, paint manufacturers, and legislatures over the impact of the spray machine on the health of workers and the need to enact legislation to regulate its use. While painters made gains on local, state, and national levels during the 1920s to prevent the use of the spray machine, their efforts ultimately failed. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Journal of Public Health American Public Health Association

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