To the Editor,
The labour movement is part of humanity’s searching for freedom.
Labour unions, or organized labour, arose in the mid 1800s with a set of values (less and less respected these days) – that of solidarity, the good of the whole, mutual assistance, equality, esprit de corps, support for families, disdain for elitism, and that democracy and individual rights do not stop at the workers’ gate.
Employees and labourers united for mutual protection and just rights. The labour union movement developed ‘weapons’ – education (supporting freedom) and the strike.
Many discovered strength in unity and to “wrest from monied interests decent wages, better living conditions and leisure, the right of every human”. There are spiritual and educational aspects of the labour movement, oft neglected and unknown.
Labour Day celebrations today are lost in the midst of summer’s ending. Let us honour Labour Day and all those who have ‘served’ us in the past year. Let us honour their labours and our labours, too.
We are all in service, we are all labouring. We are valuable.
Micheal Razberry, Nanaimo