Mayday had its origins in the executions of anarchist union organisers in the USA - we look at this history and report on modern celebrations of Mayday as a workers holiday

May Day in Cork


Cork WSM are mobilizing in support of the May Day March called by the Independent Workers Union.  

Later in the day Solidarity Books on Douglas St celebrates Mayday with two talks and a free community meal!

Mayday 2010 in Belfast


The Belfast Mayday demonstration began at Writers Square. A pavilion had been set up in front of the imposing St. Anne's Cathedral and rows of stands and tables were being occupied by a number of organizations including the Services Industrial Professional Technical Union, the Socialist Party, the Worker's Party, Amnesty International, the Northern Ireland Public Services Union, the Irish Congress Trade Unions, the National Union of Rail Maritime and Transport Workers, the Irish Transport and General Workers Union*, the Eirigi party, the Irish Republican Socialist Party, the Alliance for Choice, the Union of Shop Distributors and Allied Workers, the National Association of Schoolmasters and Union of Women Teachers, United Teachers Union, the Irish National Teachers Association, the UNISON retirees union, the Trocaire campaign to feed the hungry, the We Won't Pay anti-water charges campaign, and the Anarchist Just Books Collective representing Organise!. Several food, coffee, and beer stands were also set up in the area in front of the pavilion and many families were in attendance. The minor writings of Marx and general Irish Trade Union activist literature dominated the tables as well as a strong presence of Trotsky and Engels; the Just Books table carried the anarchist torch alone, passing out copies of Organise!'s excellent publication, 'The Leveller'.

Derry's 2010 Mayday march


In what was described as 'quite a respectable turnout' Mayday in Derry  saw over 100 people take part in the Mayday march called by the Derry Trade Union Council.  Those taking part included the DTUC, GMB, UNISON, 3/3 branch, Communities Against Cuts, Anti-Water Tax, IRSP, WSM and Organise!

Mayday in Dublin - going through the motions.


This year May Day fell on a Saturday, meaning that the Dublin march would take place on the day itself. Almost a wash-out (owing to two hours of quite heavy rain right before the demonstration) the march was essentially going through the motions of a Dublin May Day from beginning to end.

Mayday 2010 celebrated in Cork


As once again Cork's mainstream trade unions declined to publicly celebrate the everlasting memorial day to working peoples' struggles worldwide, it falls to Solidarity Books/Workers Solidarity Movement Cork Branch and the Independent Workers Union to mark this most important of days. A day of public talks and a community meal was organised by the local branch of the WSM at Solidarity Books, which complemented excellently the annual May Day march through the city streets this evening organised as usual by the Independent Workers Union.

International Anarchist Mayday statement


Today as in the past, May Day means respect for mobilizations throughout the world by workers who suffer, at times even paying with their lives, for the sake of their struggles to improve the condition of men and women who labour under the control of capitalism.

Why We Celebrate on Mayday


The struggle against capitalism and authority is constant but each year on May Day the labour movement takes time out to celebrate its history and achievements. Rather than dwell on the hardships of struggle we take to the streets and remember what it is we are aiming for - the emancipation of our class. Climbing a mountain means paying close attention to the ground you walk but it's important to look up now and again in order to focus on exactly where it is you're headed.

Mayday 2008: A Fine Day for the Working Class


For those of us involved in the fight for workers' power, the 1st of May gave us much to be cheerful about. Traditionally a day to celebrate working class solidarity and militancy, workers in America and Iraq, marked May 1st with a wonderful demonstration of both of these fine qualities.

Mayday 2008 anarchist statement


International Anarchist statement for International Workers Day 2008

Why we celebrate May Day


The 1st of May as International Workers’ Day dates back to the struggle for the 8-hour working day in the USA. 
In 1886 the American Federation of Labour declared that after May 1st, “8 hours shall constitute a legal days labour”. Between that declaration and May 1st workers all around the United States went on strike to make their employers agree to a shorter work day.

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