NO ADVERTISING, GOVERNMENT OR CORPORATE FUNDING
DONATE TODAY


  May 2, 2013

Global May Day Protests Against Austerity and Deaths of Bangladeshi Workers


May Day marches in major cities around the world demand an end to austerity policies and support of workers' rights
Members don't see ads. If you are a member, and you're seeing this appeal, click here
   

Audio

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter



I support TRNN because it is the closest expression of the ideal of a free press I have seen. - Daniel
Log in and tell us why you support TRNN


biography

Jaisal Noor is a producer for The Real News Network. His stories have appeared on Democracy Now!, Free Speech Radio News and other independent news outlets. Jaisal was raised in the Baltimore-area, and has a degree in history from the University of Maryland, College Park.


transcript

Global May Day Protests Against Austerity and Deaths of Bangladeshi WorkersJAISAL NOOR, PRODUCER, TRNN: Hundreds of thousands marked May Day--also known as International Workers Day--in dozens of countries across the world. Protesters marched against austerity and demanded higher wages, better benefits, and improved working conditions. The actions took place just one week after a garment factory collapse in Bangladesh served as a grim reminder of the dangers of lax safety regulations in poor countries.

As the death toll from that disaster surpassed 400, thousands of Bangladeshis took to the streets of their capital, Dhaka, and demanded justice for the low-wage workers killed in the factory collapse, enforcement of safety standards, higher wages, and the end of threats and harassment against union organizers. Protestors reportedly chanted, "Hang the killers! Hang the Factory Owners!"

Thousands of low-wage garment workers also took to the streets of Cambodia, expressing solidarity with the workers in Bangladesh and demanding their garment industry increase their minimum wage and increase workplace protections. Solidarity actions with Bangladeshi workers were also held in New York, London, Los Angeles, among many other cities across the globe. The Pope also expressed his support for the Bangladeshi garment workers and appealed for all worker to receive fair wages.

In Indonesia, tens of thousands of union members and their supporters shut down the capital of Jakarta to protest of the government's proposed budget cutbacks and the reduction of benefits of government workers. And in the Philippines, thousands of laborers rallied in the capital, Manila, for better pay, worker protections, and job stability.

The wave of anti-austerity actions also swept Europe, with tens of thousands taking to the streets of France and Italy. In Greece, where official unemployment is over 25 percent and the government has proposed slashing thousands of more jobs, tens of thousands of public sector employees held a 24-hour anti-austerity strike to protest against massive spending cuts, reportedly shutting down much of the country's public services. Record Spanish unemployment, including over 50 percent for young people, fueled massive protests in dozens of cities, including Madrid, Barcelona, and Bilbao.

May Day turned violent in Turkey after police used tear gas and water cannon to disperse crowds attempting to enter the popular Taksim Square to show worker solidarity. Several were reportedly arrested.

Actions were also held in several African Countries, including Morocco, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe. Tens of thousands of workers and the unemployed took to the streets to demand action to end to poverty, government corruption, and enactment of policies to support job creation.

Events also took place across South America. Bolivian President Evo Morales used his May Day speech to announce the expulsion of USAID for allegedly working against his government. In Cuba, Raul Castro addressed tens of thousands who gathered to mark May Day, dedicating the day to deceased former Venezulean president Hugo Chávez. Thousands also took to the streets of Venezuela.

And in Mexico, tens of thousands of students, teachers, and workers clashed with police in the nation's capital.

May Day was also marked in dozens of cities across the United States, where thousands showed their support for low wage workers, for humane immigration reform, and against budget cuts.

In Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, and Oakland, among other cities, undocumented immigrants and their supporters showed their opposition to the proposed Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill currently being debated by the Senate. The bill would create a 13-year path to citizenship for some undocumented workers, but protestors say they oppose it because it would further criminalize the undocumented, see increased border militarization, and disadvantage low-wage and low-income workers.

Anti-austerity protests also took place in Washington, D.C., and New York, with activists demanding employers allow low-wage workers to unionize and provide them with a living wage. They also demanded an end to war and, instead, investment in schools and other infrastructure. Several were arrested, including at this scene in Washington, D.C.

Reporting for The Real News, this is Jaisal Noor.

End

DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.



Comments

Our automatic spam filter blocks comments with multiple links and multiple users using the same IP address. Please make thoughtful comments with minimal links using only one user name. If you think your comment has been mistakenly removed please email us at contact@therealnews.com

latest stories

Growing Labor Protests Paralyzing France
Refugees Dehumanized, Impoverished, and Trapped in Europe: What can we do about it?
Clinton's Candidacy Will Unite the Corporate World
Rising Up Against Empire: Jeremy Scahill and the Easter Uprising
Tapes Reveal Coup Plot Against Rousseff, Weakening Temer Government
Koch Funded Free Market Universities in Arizona
'We've Become Accustomed to the System Doing Nothing for the Killing of Black People'
IMF-Eurozone Deal Hailed as a Breakthrough, But No Relief for Greeks
Why Austrians Nearly Elected a Far Right Candidate as President
Unions and the Sanders/Clinton Split (2/2)
Democratic Nomination Battle is Not Over Yet
Will Sanders Appointees Shake Up the Convention?
'The Law Has Always Been in the Favor of Law Enforcement'
Officer Edward Nero Found Not Guilty of All Charges Over Death of Freddie Gray
Unions and the Sanders/Clinton Split (1/2)
Bernie Sanders and the Widening Political Spectrum
Austria Narrowly Elects Former Green Party Leader as President, Avoids Far-Right Candidate
The Empire Files: 100 Years of US Troops as Lab Rats
By Ignoring Fossil Fuel Extraction, the Paris Agreement is Doomed to Failure
The Occupation of the American Mind - RAI with Pink Floyd's Roger Waters (3/3)
Erdogan Targeting the 59 Pro-Kurdish HDP Parliamentarians with 445 Police Investigations
Climate Change-Fueled Droughts Pushing Africa to the Brink
The Financial Invasion of Greece
The Occupation of the American Mind - RAI with Pink Floyd's Roger Waters (2/3)
Judge to Hand Down First Verdict in Freddie Gray Case on Monday
Move to Amend and the Fight to Remove Corporate Money From U.S. Elections
Baltimore Activists Defend Tubman House Against Threats of Demolition
The Occupation of the American Mind - RAI with Pink Floyd's Roger Waters (1/3)
Ultra-Nationalist Avigdor Lieberman Accepts Post as Defense Minister of Israel
Sanders and Class Struggle in the Democratic Party

TheRealNewsNetwork.com, RealNewsNetwork.com, The Real News Network, Real News Network, The Real News, Real News, Real News For Real People, IWT are trademarks and service marks of Independent World Television inc. "The Real News" is the flagship show of IWT and The Real News Network.

All original content on this site is copyright of The Real News Network. Click here for more

Problems with this site? Please let us know

Linux VPS Hosting by Star Dot Hosting