May 1st is International Workers’ Day.
A day celebrated in over 80 countries all over the world. It is a public holiday in many other countries. Workers, their unions and their political parties, stand together to show that there is a better world, a better way and a better future.
Dream, imagine and help make that better world and better future for all.
May 1st was chosen as International Workers Day at the first congress of the Second International, meeting in Paris (1889), to commemorate the 1886 Haymarket Square Massacre in Chicago where workers were fired on, and killed, by police during a general strike for the eight-hour workday.
America surprisingly (or not) does not celebrate May Day but has a Labor Day in September.
Our Tory led Coalition hasÂ long mooted plans to move the May Day Bank Holiday to October. Mind you, October Revolution Day does have a nice ring to it!
May Day is about solidarity & respect.
At the time of writing the ‘Royal baby’ has not been born yet. It would be ironic if it was born on May Day!
It’s a funny old world though isn’t it?
For example thousands of ordinary people are having to queue outside food banks because they can’t afford to feed their family regularly, and at the same time, ordinary people (some of the same people maybe), are camping outside St Mary’s Hospital Paddington to await the birth of a baby.
A baby, of course, that will be born into wealth and privilege that will be beyond the wildest dreams of those campers.
I don’t understand it and I don’t grasp it! Each to their own of course, but I think they should gather outside an NHS Maternity Ward and cheer each time a baby is born there! That will be a much more noble use of their time and they will be cheering a little person who may grow up to joinÂ our ranks and change the world!
That old music hall song about the rich having all the fun and the poor getting all the blame, is not that far off the truth these days!
In the last five years the rich have got richer and the poor have got poorer. That is a fact. The truth is that the wealthiest in our country have doubled their wealth over this period!
Wealth inequality is at the root of most social and health problems. The task of any government should be to bring the poor and rich closer together. The less wealth inequality there is, the more healthier and safer our world will be.
Austerity does not work. It is a trick. A sleight of hand! Austerity is the enemy of reducing wealth inequality. In fact Austerity is the cause of wealth inequality.
Let’s just look at the last five years under the Cameron/Clegg Tory led Coalition:
- A massive five million people earn less than the living wage across the UK.
- The number of ‘zero hours’ contracts has hit 1.8 million.
- Low income families with children are officially the worst affected by government cuts and tax hikes.
- Youth unemployment is at its worst level for 20 years.
- Child poverty is spiralling out of control.
- The NHS is under extreme threat of imploding through deliberate lack of funds and leadership.
What has Austerity brought us? Food banks, racism and a culture of blame. Oh, and bankers bonuses, off shore accounts and more tax avoiding non-domiciled residents.
This government has privilege and unfairness written into its DNA and Eton College written into its CVs.
Austerity has failed working people.
Austerity was never meant to work for the majority of people. How can it? If it did, it wouldn’t be called Austerity, it would be called Socialism!
May Day Greetings! Imagine.
I read the other day that 1st May in the Czech Republic is alsoÂ ‘National Love Day’! Lovers flock to the memorial of the romantic poet Karel Hynek Macha in Prague to kiss!
Now you are talking!
Â Â Information on all issues can be found elsewhere on our website.
If you are reading this, work for the London Ambulance Service or are eligible to join, and are not yet a member of UNISON Join Today!
We are stronger together.