Happy Labor Day from Mahahual

May 1 Labor Day is Federal Holiday in Mexico

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Labor Day has been celebrated on May 1 in Mexico since 1923. This public holiday is also recognized throughout the world as International Workers’ Day or May Day.

The origins of Labor Day began in 1884, when the convention of the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor in Chicago moved for an 8-hour working day throughout the United States, from May 1 1886. For many years, workers had been crusading against labor exploitation and were demanding an 8-hour workday at a time when the average working day could be up to 16 hours long. Frustration increased and as the deadline drew near workers rallied. On May 1 1886 300,000 workers went on strike throughout the United States.

Clashes between workers and the police broke out in Chicago on May 3 and on May 4, an unknown protester threw a bomb into a line of police who then opened fire. The bomb killed 8 policemen and many picketers were injured, although precise numbers were never confirmed. The Haymarket Riot became synonymous with workers rights and Labor Day was born May 1 1889. Five years later president Cleveland changed the date in the United States to September 1, fearing it might strengthen the socialist movement with Canada following suit soon after.

Throughout Mexico, trade unions, professional organizations and student groups parade through the main avenues of the nation’s cities. In Playa del Carmen, the major trade unions are the Revolutionary Confederation of Workers and Farmers (CROC), the Workers Confederation of Mexico (CTM) and the Regional Confederation of Mexican Workers (CROM). These associations take part in a joint parade finishing at the City Hall at Plaza 28 de Julio on Eighth St. and 20th Ave.

Workers associations began to appear in Mexico toward the end of the 19th century. During the Revolution (1910-1920), the deplorable working conditions became more evident and workers were submitted to increasingly protracted workdays. In return, they received a pitiful salary that they were forced to spend at stores owned by their employers.

The Casa del Obrero Mundial (COM), or House of the World Worker, organization was founded in 1912 in Mexico City and was the foundation of the first Mexican trade unions. COM established May 1 as Labor Day in 1923 and held the first parade. It was officially established in 1925 under President Plutarco Elías Calles.

Thanks for reading,
Stewart Rogers USA_South Carolina

One thought on “Happy Labor Day from Mahahual

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