Friday, April 22, 2011

Moscow, 8 April 2011

The 1st of May is drawing near, the date observed annually by the world trade union movement as the International Day of Workers’ Solidarity. The main distinction of the forthcoming May Day is that it will mark 125 years since peaceful worker demonstrators were shot and killed in Chicago. It was in their memory that world workers started to observe this day.

Millions of organised workers all over the world, including CIS countries, will take to the streets to participate in mass rallies, meetings, demonstrations and marches in order to place their claims and demands on the authorities and employers, and identify priorities for further actions by trade unions in defence of their members’ rights and freedoms.

Today, the world is gradually recovering from a financial and economic crisis that this planet has not seen for decades. Hardest hit by the crisis were workers who are in no way responsible for its emergence. The attempts to come out of the global recession at the cost of infringing on the basic rights of working people met with an unprecedented degree of cohesion and solidarity on the part of the world trade union movement. Consequently, both participants in the summits of the world’s most influential states and leaders of the international financial and trade institutions are now paying more heed to the voice of trade unions.

A considerable contribution to this common struggle has been made by trade unions in CIS countries who denied resolutely to accept any anti-crisis programmes that did not take into account the needs and aspirations of the working population.

As it meets in Moscow for its regular session, the Council of the General Confederation of Trade Unions calls on all the GCTU affiliates, all trade union members, all workers in the CIS countries to take part in the events to be organised by trade unions on May 1, and in this way reaffirm their will to strengthen their unity for the protection of workers’ interests and the advancement of our countries towards a more equitable and happy future.

We call on our affiliates to mark this May Day by organising marches, rallies, picket lines, meetings and other events under the following slogans:
- Decent work, decent pay, decent work conditions for working people!
- Decent work is socially protected work!
- Creation of new jobs is the right way to economic recovery!
- Minimum pay – not less than the subsistence minimum!
- We reject the attempts to revise labour laws to the detriment of workers!
- No to the antiunion policies and uncontrolled activities of TNCs in CIS countries!
- No to agency contract work, and paid services of private employment agencies!
- Long live International Solidarity of Workers and Trade Unions!

Long live 1 May!