By the World Federation of Trade Unions

April 26,  2024

 

The World Federation of Trade Unions, the militant, class-oriented voice, representing over 105 million workers who live, work, and struggle in 134 countries of the 5 continents, honors the 138th anniversary of the struggle of workers in Chicago in 1886. A struggle that constituted a lasting milestone of the working class and a bright beacon for the struggles of today and tomorrow, a beacon of the uninterrupted class struggle for stable work with rights, social security, free public, and universal health and education, dignified life.

This year’s May Day anniversary will go down in history as a bloody anniversary. Because while millions of workers around the world organize themselves, demand against the anti-people’s policies of capital, its governments and the EU, our colleagues in Palestine will be burying the dozens of bodies murdered every day in the genocide that is carried out by Israel. Workers in every corner of the globe will not remain silent in the crime being committed. They will turn every May Day activity into a demonstration of solidarity with the struggling Palestinian people, and of condemnation of the murderous state of Israel and its imperialist allies who in one way or another support the massacre.

Similarly, the workers do not remain silent on every other crime committed against the peoples, for the profits of the imperialists and the monopolies. At a time when the planet is dripping blood in various places from military interventions, the international class-oriented trade union movement, organized and decisively, is fighting for peace. We say no to imperialist plans and military conflicts. The struggle for peace has a specific content. It means first and foremost a struggle for the dismantling of NATO and all military coalitions, a struggle to defend the right of every people to choose the path of their own economic and social development without interventions, sanctions, blockades, and economic wars. Against the double-standards policy where international law ends up being in practice the law of the powerful ones.

The messages and demands of the Chicago pioneers of 1886 remain relevant today. The crisis of capitalism is generalized and deepens. Social inequalities are widening dramatically. Democratic freedoms and trade union rights, are under attack all over the world.

The high cost of living and inflation are brutally undermining workers’ and pensioners living standards. Τhe right to organize and collective bargaining and the sacred right to strike are under attack.

Individual contracts, privatizations, outsourcing, teleworking and “service leasing” are just some of the forms taken by this harsh neoliberal attack.

Major social achievements such as social security and public health care are being privatized while the authoritarian and arbitrary increase of the retirement age methodically continues.

It is obvious that the burden of the capitalist crisis, is being attempted once again to be put on the shoulders of the working people and the weak popular strata in general.

The workers all over the world do not passively accept the capitalist anti-grassroots, and anti-worker attacks. They refuse to pay the bill of the capitalist crisis. With militant struggles and mobilizations in all corners of the globe, they demand the satisfaction of their contemporary needs. The WFTU and its affiliates are, and will continue firmly being in the vanguard of this struggles!

In this year’s May Day celebrations and demonstrations, the Palestinian flag will wave proudly next to the WFTU’s and its affiliates’ flags. In a spirit of solidarity and internationalism, we firmly stand beside the people of the heroic Cuba, and the peoples who struggle against the murderous sanctions, interventions, imperialist aggression, blockades and economic wars.

On the occasion of May Day 2024, the WFTU calls the class and militant trade unions around the world to organize this year’s campaign and activities under the slogan:

Against Their Profits We Rise Up for Our Lives, More Massive and Militant!

  • For the workers’ contemporary needs, against the exploitation!
  • For democratic and trade union freedoms!
  • In solidarity with Palestine, against imperialist wars and interventions!
  • For the class-oriented trade union movement, for the workers who resist, who do not compromise with oppression, discrimination and exploitation, there is only one path of dignity: the path of the struggles!

The struggles that have taken place signal hope, show the enormous power of the organized working class, and illuminate the path of struggle against capitalist exploitation.