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Washington Outlook: Capital Wrapup


The last vestige of Depression-era rules regulating the cottage industry in apparel is about to be abandoned. At the urging of Vice-President Dan Quayle's Council on Competitiveness, Labor Secretary Lynn Martin is planning to overhaul rules that prohibit the home manufacture of women's garments and of jewelry-making that involves hazardous substances. Needle-trade unions won enactment of the regulations--and have long defended them--on the grounds that officials have no way to make sure that home-based operations follow wage, safety, and child-labor laws. Of course, home workers are also all but impossible to organize. And the end of the ban is one more measure of the waning clout of unions.EDITED BY STEPHEN H. WILDSTROM

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