May Day

The Green Party stands with those fighting for worker and immigrant rights

May 1st is International Workers Day, a global holiday recognizing the historic struggle of working people throughout the world.  It is interconnected with the struggles being led by immigrants, climate justice activists, the Black Lives Matter movement, young people and the LGBTQ+ community.

Below is a collection of essays written by Green Party activists in celebration of May Day.

  • International Workers' Day & the Legacy of the Paris Commune

SAN JOSE, CA –International Workers' Day - often referred to as May Day - is tomorrow! It is probably the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic that workers all over the world will be able to join local rallies while practicing safe distancing (and wearing masks!). May Day symbolizes the struggles of the working class across the globe against the exploitative and destructive nature of capitalism. It was first celebrated in the U.S. (Chicago) in 1886 and led to the Haymarket Affair whose influence on international labor movements carries on to this day.

SAN FRANCISCO – Ever since the historic labor movement culminating in Chicago's 1886 Haymarket Riot and the commemorating of May Day as International Workers Day, capitalists have pushed back against workers' rights and safety, and their ability to organize.

Other moments in history brought the labor movements' struggle to intersect other critical movements such as when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. went to Memphis to support the African American sanitation workers' efforts to unionize and their strike in protest of low wages, unsafe work conditions, and their abusive white bosses. The picket signs they carried stated the simple message: “I Am A Man.”

DEERFIELD, MA – Welcome to the inaugural issue of The Voice of Massachusetts Greens. We will share the thoughts and activities of our state and local party activists and allies. Join with us in our quest to support gravely endangered People, Planet and Peace. Every voice counts.

The Democratic Party Pursues a Purge of the Green Party from the Ballot

My great grandfather died as a result of injuries from a white supremacist's bomb. From Reconstruction up to the Civil Rights Era bombings and lynchings took thousands of black lives. Yet, for almost 100 years from 1877-1966 only one Southern white man, John S. Williams, was ever convicted of killing a black person in the USA. This glaring fact is indicative of the institutionalization of white supremacy. It is an example of structural violence. 

Happy May Day and International Workers Day! We hope you have a chance to gather with people in your community to celebrate movements of working people and the fight for Eco-Socialism.

Green Party of New York members are welcome to join our Statewide Meeting on Saturday, May 11 in Rensselaer for an afternoon of workshops and the renewal of our state platform. Please RSVP online if you are interested in attending.

"May Day" or International Workers' Day commands a worldwide celebration of massive marches and events but it is hardly noticed in its country of origin, the United States. I am proud to be a member and a staff member of the Green Party of United States because the Green Party celebrates workers on this special day.

In October 1884, the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions met in Chicago for its annual convention. The delegates approved a resolution stating “eight hours shall constitute a legal day's labor from and after May 1, 1886”. The resolution continued that if the federal government did not enact legislation enforcing the 8-hour day by May 1, 1888, the Federation would call a general strike.

Join Minneapolis councilmember Cam Gordon, Commissioner LaTrisha Vetaw, and Minneapolis Greens in the 45th annual May Day Parade! The Green Party will march in the Free Speech section of the parade. 

We will meet at Cedar Field near 25th street and 18th Avenue S. The parade starts at noon, so make sure to get there in time to join us for the full parade. For more information, you can check out the Facebook event here.

By The Santa Clara County Green Party

We began this month by honoring those who have fought for labor rights and whose sacrifices led to the international May Day observances for workers! Who knew that what they fought for, such as the 40-hour work week, would be threatened today, by the wealth gap and income crisis many families face. 

By Brendan Phillips

As May Day approaches, I reflect on great on labor heroes. People like Mary Harris Jones, Big Bill Haywood, and Joe Hill. Those who helped bring us the eight hour workday, sick time, maternal leave, and other worker protections. They showed us the power of unionization, solidarity, and direct action. We saw what lengths the ruling class will go to protect their power at Haymarket Square, when they went so far as to murder labor activists.

By Howie Hawkins, May 1, 2018

May Day, or International Workers Day, is celebrated with marches and rallies every May 1 to lift up the working people and their demands for freedom, equality, and justice. That is the Red tradition of May Day. But there is also an older Green tradition that cultures the world over celebrate as Spring arrives in temperate and arctic climates and the wet season arrives in tropical climates. This Green tradition of May Day celebrates all that is free and life-giving on the green Earth that is our common wealth and heritage. These Red and Green May Day traditions are complementary.