May Day Protests



Indonesian workers shout slogans during a May Day protest in Jakarta, Indonesia, Sunday, May 1, 2011. (AP Photo/Irwin Fedriansyah)

Marissa Palermo, Reporter

International Workers’ Day, also known as May Day, is an international holiday that takes place annually on May first. It is a day dedicated to the celebration of workers’ rights, often referred to as universal Labor Day. Trade unions and human rights advocates continue the annual tradition in 2018 across the world. In Paris, Bangladesh, Istanbul, Moscow, the United States, and more, rallies and protests filled the streets.

In the city of Paris, the peaceful protesting soon took a turn for the worst when rioters protesting the French President Macron’s decisions in reforms hit in windows and set fires to vehicles as they protested the economic reforms. According to Independent, over 200 arrests were made. The group calls themselves the black-clad. The president was not in France at the time of these riots.

The protests in Seattle, Washington consisted of both far-right and far-left protesters. An organization called “Proud Boys” arrived, consisting of a few dozen alt-right advocates. A different group of protesters advocated for immigrants’ rights.

According to The Washington Post, in Moscow over 100,000 people marched. In South Korea, the Korean Confederation of Trade unions orchestrated the protests, in which members of labor unions advocated for an increase in minimum wage. The rallies planned on May Day in Sri Lanka were postponed by the government due to the religious festival, Vesak. In Macedonia, hundreds of protesters advocated for workers’ rights and poor working conditions. Many Puerto Ricans protested delayed hurricane relief help, the protection of pension cuts, and school shutdowns.

Protests also occurred in many additional places, including Bangladesh, Turkey, Cuba, Scandinavia, Spain, Cyprus, Philippines, and Germany.