Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/Sweating System

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SWEATING SYSTEM, the system by which sub-contractors undertake to do work in their own houses or small workshops, and employ others to do it, making a profit for themselves by the difference between the contract prices and the wages they pay their assistants. Laws have been enacted both in England and the United States to regulate the system, and providing penalties for the employment of children and others in over-crowded and ill-ventilated “sweat shops.”