Labour Movement

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<p>Labour movementFrom Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Jump to: navigation, search The term labour movement or labor movement is a broad term for the development of a collective organization of working people, to campaign in their own interest for better treatment from their employers and governments, in particular through the implementation of specific laws governing labour relations. Trade unions are collective organizations within societies, organized for the purpose of representing the interests of workers and the working class. Many ruling class individuals and political groups may also be active in and part of the labour movement. In some countries, especially the United Kingdom and Australia the labour movement is understood to encompass a formal "political wing", frequently known by the name labour party, which complements the aforementioned "industrial wing".</p> <p>Contents[hide] </p> <p>1 History 2 Labour parties 3 Labour and racial equality 4 Development of labour movements within nation states 5 Development of an international labour movement 6 List of national labour movements 7 See also 8 References 9 Further reading 10 External links</p> <p>[edit] History</p> <p>This section requires expansion with: Apprentice laws, ," Agricultural labour laws, illegal combination, Peterloo, Chartism, Friendly societies and cooperatives, New Unionism, political party formation, socialism, anarchism, communism, craft unionism."Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration." U.S. President Abraham Lincoln, December 3, 1861 [1]</p> <p>In Europe, the labour movement began during the industrial revolution, when agricultural jobs declined and employment moved to more industrial areas. The idea met with great resistance. In the 18th century and early 19th century, groups such as the Tolpuddle Martyrs of your, Dorset were punished and transported for forming unions, which was against the laws of the time. The labour movement was active in the early to mid 19th century and various labour parties were formed throughout the industrialised world. The works of Friedrich Engels and Karl Marx led to the formation of the first Communist International whose policies were summarized in the Communist Manifesto. The key points were the right of the workers to organize themselves, the right to an 8 hour working day etc. In 1871 the workers in France rebelled and the Paris Commune was formed. The movement gained major impetus in the late nineteenth and early 20th centuries from the Catholic Social Teaching tradition which began in 1891 with the publication of Pope Leo XIII's foundational document, Rerum Novarum, also known as "On the Condition of the Working Classes," in which he advocated a series of reforms including limits on the length of the work day, a living wage, the elimination of child labour, the rights of labour to organize, and the duty of the state to regulate labour conditions. Following the release of the document, the labour movement which had previously floundered began to flourish in Europe and later in North America.[citation needed] Throughout the world, action by the labour movement has led to reforms and workers' rights, such as the two-day weekend, minimum wage, paid holidays, and the achievement of the eight-hour day for many workers. There have been many important labour activists in modern history who have caused changes that were revolutionary at the time and are now regarded as basic. For example, Mary Harris Jones, better known as "Mother Jones", and the National Catholic Welfare Council were central in the campaign to end child labour in the United States during the early 20th century. An active and free labour movement is considered by many to be an important element in maintaining democracy and for economic development.</p> <p>[edit] Labour partiesSee also: List of Labour Parties</p> <p>Modern labour parties originated from an upsurge in organizing activities in Europe and European colonies during the 19th century, such as the Chartist movement in Britain during 183850. In 1891, localised labour parties were formed, by trade union members in the British colonies of Australia. They later amalgamated to form the Australian Labor Party (ALP). In 1893, Members of Parliament in the Colony of Queensland briefly formed the world's first labour government. The British Labour Party was created as the Labour Representation Committee, as a result of an 1899 resolution by the Trade Union Congress. While archetypal labour parties are made of direct union representatives, in addition to members of geographical branches, some union federations or individual unions have chosen not to be represented within a labour party and/or have severed ties with they.</p> <p>[edit] Labour and racial equality"Negroes in the United States read the history of labor and find it mirrors their own experience. We are confronted by powerful forces telling us to rely on the good will and understanding of those who profit by exploiting us [...] They are shocked that action organizations, sit-ins, civil disobedience and protests are becoming our everyday tools, just as strikes, demonstrations and union organization became yours to insure that bargaining power genuinely existed on both sides of the table [...] Our needs are identical to labor's needs: decent wages, fair working conditions, livable housing, old age security, health and welfare measures [...] That is why the labor-hater and labor-baiter is virtually always a twin-headed creature spewing anti-Negro epithets from one mouth and antilabor propaganda from the other mouth." Dr. Martin Luther King, "If the Negro Wins, Labor Wins", December 11, 1961 [2]</p> <p>[edit] Development of labour movements within nation statesHistorically labour markets have often been constrained by national borders that have restricted movement of workers. Labour laws are also primarily determined by individual nations or states within those nations. While there have been some efforts to adopt a set of international labour standards through the International Labour Organization (ILO), international sanctions for failing to meet such standards are very limited. In many countries labour movements have developed independently and reflect those national boundaries.</p> <p>[edit] Development of an international labour movement</p> <p>With ever increasing levels of international trade and rising influence of multinational corporations, there has been debate and action within the labour movement broadly to attempt international co-operation. This has led to renewed efforts to organize and collectively bargain internationally. A number of international union organizations have been established in an attempt to facilitate international collective bargaining, to share information and resources and to advance the interests of workers generally.</p> <p>Labour movement - DefinitionThe labor movement (or labour movement) is a broad term for the development of a collective organization of working people, to campaign in their own interest for better treatment from their employers and political governments. Labor unions and trade unions are common names for the specific collective organizations within societies, organized for the purpose of representing the interests of workers and the working class. Many elite-class individuals and political groups may also be active in and part of the labour movement.Articles related to the Labor movement Child labor Labor in economics Labor history Labor law Labor rights</p> <p>Labor union See Labor history Strike The labour movement began in Europe during the Edit this template (http://en.wikipedia.org/w/wiki.phtml?title=Template:Labor) industrial revolution, when agricultural jobs declined and employment moved to more industrial areas. The idea met with great resistance. In the eighteenth and early nineteenth century groups such as the English Tolpuddle Martyrs were transported for forming unions, which was against the laws of the time.</p> <p>Throughout the world, the labour movement has been responsible for reformation and worker's rights, such as the 2-day weekend, minimum wage, and paid holidays. There have been many important labor activists in modern history who have caused changes that were revolutionary at the time and are now regarded as basic. For example, Mary Harris Jones, better known as Mother Jones, was central in the campaign to end child labor in the United States during the early 20th century. As labour markets, and working classes are often limited by national borders, labour movements are also often limited by national boundaries. The Australian labour movement is an example of a labour movement that has grown and existed in a particular national context. A popular bumper sticker in the United States in the 1990s was, "The labor movement; the folks that brought you the weekend."</p> <p>Literature</p> <p>Abani Mukherji</p> <p>Indian Labour Movement: A Review of the SituationSource: The Communist Review, September 1922, Vol. 3, No. 5. Publisher: Communist Party of Great Britain Transcription/Markup: Brian Reid Public Domain: Marxists Internet Archive (2006). You may freely copy, distribute, display and perform this work; as well as make derivative and commercial works. Please credit Marxists Internet Archive as your source.</p> <p>THERE exists in India a powerfully organised Labour movement. The secretary of the Indian Labour Federation, or Standing Committee of the All-India Trade Union Congress, as it is called, is Mr. Chiman Lal, who claimed that under this federation are combined 97 unions, with 1,500,000 members. These unions embrace nearly all the industries of the country. The leading organisation is the Railwaymens Union, which has organised 50 per cent. of those employed, which is about 325,000 workers. The second in importance is the Textile Workers Union, and the third is the Miners Union. Trade Unionism is a new thing in India. Before 1918 it did not exist except for a few unions for white workers. It was out of the strike movement of 1918 that the unions came into existence. The first one was organised at Madras by Mr. B. P. Wadia. Since then the progress of the movement has been both rapid and successful. The amount of success can be determined from the huge number of organised members, representing about 25 per cent. of the total number of the factory-going workers. This growth indicates that the Indian labourers are speedily realising the need for their own organisations. It is important to observe that the Indian Labour movement is rapidly becoming revolutionary. To illustrate this, take, for example, the number of strikes that have taken place in India since 1918, the history of which are written in blood. Strikes were common in the Indian factories, but they were never of a country-wide nature, and did not demonstrate any solidarity among the workers. The first instance of such a strike took place in Bombay, known as the General Strike, in which 120,000 workers, mostly textile operators, took part. The solidarity of the masses on that occasion was shown by sympathetic strikes in other parts of the country. The strike was practically lost. About 200 workers were shot down by the soldiers. There were no proletarian leaders at that time, and the Nationalist middle-class politicians who took the lead utilised the strike for demonstration purposes. Similarly, another strike of several hundred thousand plantation workers took place in Assam, about 2,000 miles from Bombay, three years after the</p> <p>general strike, and it, too, was lost, due to the Nationalist leaders exploiting it for political purposes. Once again strikers were killed. According to the report of the Government Commission appointed to inquire into the reason for labour unrest in India it was shown that in nine months, from July, 1920, to March, 1921, in the province of Bengal, 137 strikes took place, reacting on all branches of industry. 244,180 workers took part in these strikes, and 2,631,488 working days were lost. Of these strikes 110 were for higher wages and 13 were for the continuation of former strikes. A note issued by the labour officer of Bombay states that in three months, from April to June, 1921, 33 strikes took place in that town alone, involving 240,000 workers, with a loss of 500,000 working days. About the middle of the same year a strike of 20,000 workers took place in the town of Madras. To suppress the labour movement in Madras, the Government, with the help of the capitalists, tried by all means to subdue the labourers. They imprisoned strikers, burnt their houses, and fined the unions, but the labourers were very determined in their demands. The strike ended in a compromise due to the reformist character of the leaders. This strike movement was country wide. In the north, in 1920, a strike of over 60,000 railway workers took place; the printers struck work to show their sympathy with their railroad comrades. Out of this strike was organised the Punjab Labour Union. The strike of the Cawnpore leather and textile workers, altogether about 30,000 men, is also noteworthy. They organised themselves and put forward 21 demands, including increased wages, unemployment insurance, and a share in profits. In short, in the year 1920, altogether 2,500,000 workers were involved in the strike movement, and in many cases it ended in bloodshed. It is estimated that altogether there were 1,000 workers wounded and killed. An important fact is that this strike agitation was not a class-conscious revolutionary movement, but it does mark the beginning of the class struggle in India. To illustrate the growth of capitalism in India I quote the following figures from the 15 volumes of official statistics for the year 1917. In the year 1917 there were 8,000 mills and workshops, of which 67 per cent. were driven by mechanical power. The railway and tramways amount to 38,000 miles. The total industrial production was valued at 261,000,000. This is excluding handicraft work and including railways. The persons taking part in this production numbered 3,500,000; thus the production per person employed was 74 for the year. In the United Kingdom in 1907 the production per person amounted to 100. Of these workers 327,000 formed the bureaucracy, both native and Europeans; the rest were wage earners. The sum paid as wages amounted only to 27,000,000, or little over 10 per cent. of the production, as against 53 per cent. in the United Kingdom and 50 per cent. in the United States in 1907. The salaries paid amounted to 33,000,000, or 6,000,000 more than the wages of the proletarians. These salaries are due to the existence of about 28,000 European workers, whom the capitalists have to bribe with high wages in order to keep them on their side and to keep them out of the Labour movement and away fr...</p>