on strike

Idioms & Phrases

on strike

Engaged in a work stoppage, as in The auto workers were on strike for the entire summer. The use of strike for a concerted labor stoppage undertaken to gain concessions from employers dates from the early 1800s. Today it is also used more loosely, as in Where washing dishes is concerned, Mom has announced that she's on strike. Also see go out, def. 4.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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