Publication Date



[Excerpt] The Department of Labor (DOL) was created in 1913 by “An Act to create a Department of Labor” (P.L. 62-426). Its purpose was “to foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners of the United States, to improve their working conditions, and to advance their opportunities for profitable employment.” P.L. 62-426 initially authorized a new mediation service and four pre-existing bureaus. Numerous laws since 1913 have added program and enforcement responsibilities to DOL such that it is now comprised of multiple entities that provide services related to worker protection, income support, workforce development, and labor statistics. DOL administers and enforces more than 180 federal laws.


Suggested Citation
Bradley, D. H. (2018). Major functions of the U.S. Department of Labor (CRS In Focus IFI0975). Washington, D.C.: Congressional Research Service.