Statement from the International Trade Union Conferderation
1 May 2018
One hundred and fifty years ago, workers in Britain came together to create the world’s first national trade union centre, the TUC, in the city of Manchester.
They, and working people in many other places at that time, laid the first foundations for the global trade union movement of today, more than 200 million strong. Ever since those early steps, men and women organising together have built and grown their unions and changed the course of history.
Today, May Day 2018, we pay homage to all those who have given so much in fighting for the basic rights that so many today can take for granted – freedom of association, the right to bargain collectively, protection from discrimination and exploitation and safety at work. We also stand in solidarity with those who are denied these rights and who, in a world where the rules that enshrine these rights do not apply to all, are fighting just the same struggles against exploitation and abuse that the mothers and fathers of our movement had to fight a century and a half ago.