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Print - SMRTNE KAZNE ZA 8-SATNO RADNO VRIJEME

ZAŠTO OBILJEŽAVAMO 1. MAJ

1. 5. 2020.
SMRTNE KAZNE ZA 8-SATNO RADNO VRIJEME

Na Međunarodni dan rada, odnosno Prvog maja, odaje se počast svjetskom radničkom pokretu. Na ovaj dan se obično postavljaju razni društveni i radni zahtjevi u korist radničke klase. Međunarodni praznik rada obilježava se 1. maja u znak sjećanja na nemire u  Haymarketu.

Autor: Stefano Cherubini
Prijevod: Milica Kuzmanović

Industrijska revolucija je bila proces ekonomskih, socijalnih i tehnoloških promjena. Dogodila se tokom 18. stoljeća, najprije u Velikoj Britaniji, a zatim i u drugim državama s razvijenom ekonomijom. Taj proces imao je izravan utjecaj na živote ljudi, jer je zauvijek promijenio način proizvodnje i ekonomske odnose unutar društva.

Preseljenjem iz ruralnih područja u gradove, i fokusiranjem na industriju, a ne na poljoprivredu, gospodarstvo se drastično promijenilo. To je uzrokovalo velike migracije iz ruralnih područja u gradove kako bi novi radnici mogli raditi u tvornicama. To je rezultiralo stvaranjem urbane radničke klase - proletarijata.

Radnici su bili podvrgnuti nehumanim uvjetima rada. Primjerice, prvi zakon koji je regulirao rad u tvornicama donesen je u Engleskoj, 1802. godine.  Između ostalog, u tom zakonu bilo je navedeno radno vrijeme od 16 sati dnevno, djeca su počinjala raditi u dobi od 8 godina, radnici su mogli dobiti otkaz bez obrazloženja, a bile su predviđene i novčane kazne za napuštanje radnog mjesta.

Te promjene dovele su do eksploatacije radnika. Čitave obitelji živjele su u tvornicama kako bi zaradili za preživljavanje. Uvjeti stanovanja unutar tvornica bili su užasni, a naravno, vremena za obrazovanje djece bilo je jako malo, jer je sve bilo podređeno proizvodnji.

Upravo su se zbog toga dogodili nemiri u Haymarketu. Krajem 19. stoljeća Chicago je bio drugi najveći grad u Sjedinjenim Američkim Državama. Što se tiče radnih uvjeta, radni dan mogao je trajati i do 18 sati. Međutim, čak i u slučajevima kada bi radnici bez posebnog razloga morali raditi više od 18 sati, novčana kazna koju je poslodavac trebao platiti bila je samo 25 dolara.

Godine 1886., usvojen je zakon kojim je maksimalni broj sati u toku jednog radnog dana ograničen na 8 sati, ali nisu sve države poštovale ovaj zakon. Neke su dozvoljavale 10 sati rada dnevno, a stvarnosti je bili da su radnici morali raditi čak i duže.

Svi mediji bili su protiv radničkih zahtjeva, jer su smatrali kako je osmosatni radni dan besmislica, i kako će to zaustaviti brzi ekonomski napredak zemlje, te će se svako tko stupi u štrajk smatrati osobom bez patriotskih osjećaja. Međutim, ova propaganda nije spriječila radnike da se bore za bolje radne uvjete i dostojanstven život.

Više od 200.000 radnika započelo je pobunu 1. svibnja 1886. godine. Za dio radnika, poput radnika iz Chicaga, borbe su trajale danima, a kako bi njihovi zahtjevi bili ispunjeni, morala se proliti krv.

U Chicagu su pobune trajale četiri dana tokom kojih je policija nasilno napadala radnike. Mnogi radnici su teško ozlijeđeni, a četvero ih je poginulo. Oni koji su zarobljeni izvedeni su pred sud, ali tokom suđenja nisu poštovane zakonsku proceduru i prava.

Pravni postupak protiv trideset i jednog radnika pokrenut je 21. lipnja 1886. godine, ali je taj broj kasnije smanjen na osam radnika. Unatoč činjenici kako je suđenje bilo farsa i kako je održano bez poštovanja procesnih pravila, tisak je proglašavao optužene krivima i prije presude. Iako nije bilo nikakvih dokaza, ‘čikaška osmorica’ proglašena su krivima, osuđeni su kao neprijatelji društva i države. Kazna je bila drakonska, petorica radnika osuđena su na smrt vješanjem, a trojica na kaznu zatvora.

Krajem svibnja 1886. godine, poslodavci iz raznih sektora složili su se kako će odobriti osmosatno radno vrijeme za nekoliko stotina tisuća radnika u Chicagu, i u drugim državama. Uspjeh je bio takav da je Savez esnafa i organiziranih sindikata izrazio zadovoljstvo ovim riječima: „Nikada u povijesti ove zemlje nije došlo do tako općeg ustanka među industrijskim masama. Želja za kraćim radnim danom potaknula je milijune radnika da se pridruže postojećim organizacijama, iako su prije toga bili ravnodušni prema sindikatima."

Te društvene pobjede radnika imale su odjeka u cijelom svijetu, a posebno u industrijaliziranoj Europi, koja je imala slične uvjete eksploatacije kao i Sjedinjene Američke Države. Finska je osmosatno radno vrijeme prvi put uvela 1908. godine. Poljska i Njemačka 10 godina kasnije, 1918. godine, a Francuska, Portugal i Španjolska 1919. godine. Velika Britanija je zanimljiv slučaj, jer trenutno radno vrijeme u Velikoj Britaniji nije ograničeno dnevno, već po tjednima. Odredbama o radnom vremenu iz 1998. godine, prvi put je uvedeno ograničenje od 40 sati tjedno za radnike mlađe od 18 godina, a 48 sati tjedno za starije od 18 godina. Prije ove odredbe nije postojalo zakonsko ograničenje.

Ti su anarhosindikalisti pogubljeni u Sjedinjenim Američkim Državama zbog sudjelovanja u borbama za postizanje osmosatnog radnog dana, koje su počele štrajkom 1. svibnja 1886. godine. Vrhunac se dogodio tri dana kasnije, točnije 4. svibnja, pobunom u Haymarket. Od tada, Prvi maj je postao dan kada radnici izlaze sa svojim zahtjevima za poboljšanje prava radnika. Ovaj dan obilježava se širom svijeta. Prvi maj je dan radničke klase, dan kada se odaje počast svima koji su žrtvovali svoje živote za poboljšanje radnih uvjeta, od štrajka u Chicagu do današnje borbe koju vode radnici širom svijeta. Sam praznik je uspostavljen odlukom Drugog međunarodnog socijalističkog kongresa radnika održanog u Parizu 1889. godine.

 

 

International Workers' Day or May Day is the commemoration of the world labour movement. It is a day that has habitually been used to make different social and labour demands in favour of the working classes. Its origins date backs to the Haymarket revolt.

 

The Industrial Revolution was a process of economic, social and technological transformation, which took place during XVIII century starting in the UK and then moving to other industrially developed economies. This process had a direct impact in people’s life, since it changed forever the way to produce and the economic relations inside societies.

Economy changed dramatically, going from a rural based on agriculture one to an urban and industrialized one. These caused a big migration from the rural areas to the cities, in order for these workers to work in factories. These consolidated the creation of an urban working-class: the proletariat.

These workers were submitted to inhumane working conditions. Just to have an idea of this, the first law regulating work in factories was passed in England in 1802 stablishing the following: 16 hours of work per day, kids were supposed to start working at the age of 8, unmotivated firing was possible, fines for abandoning place of work, among others.

These changes created a context of un-precedent workers exploitation, in which the whole family lived in the factory in order to work and survive. The housing conditions inside the factories were horrible, and of course, the time for the children education was minimal, as the most important thing was always to produce.  

It is in this context that the Haymarket Revolt took place. At the end of the 19th century, Chicago was the second biggest city in the United States. Regarding working conditions, the maximum working day could be up to 18 hours. If an employer made the worker stay for more than 18 hours without a special reason, the fine they would have to pay would be only 25 dollars.

In 1886 a law was passed which made the maximum working day of 8 hours, however not all states respected it, allowing days of 10 hours (which in reality were even longer).

All the media was against the workers claims, as they were considering that an 8-hour working day was nonsense, would stop the fast economic growth of the country and anyone who went on strike would be considered as anti-patriotic. However, none of this propaganda stopped the workers to fight for better working conditions and a life of dignity.

On the first of May of 1886 the revolts started, and over 200.000 workers. For some other workers, such as the Chicago ones, the struggle took more days and blood had to be spilled for them to achieve their demands.

In Chicago, the revolts lasted 4 days, during which police attacked violently the workers. Many workers were seriously injured and 4 of them even killed. Some others were captured and submitted to trials, which did not respect the legal procedure and its guarantees.

On June 21, 1886, the trial was initiated against 31 workers, with the number later being reduced to eight. Despite the fact that the trial was a farce and was held without respecting procedural rules, the press maintained the guilt of all those accused and called for harsh penalties ignoring the due legal procedure. Although nothing could be proven against them, the Chicago eight were found guilty, accused of being enemies of society and the established order. Punishment was Draconic: five of them were sentenced to death by hanging and three of them were sentenced to prison.

At the end of May 1886, various employers' sectors agreed to grant the eight-hour day to several hundred thousand workers in Chicago and other States. The success was such that the Federation of Guilds and Organized Unions expressed their joy with these words: “Never in the history of this country has there been such a general uprising among the industrial masses. The desire for a shorter workday has prompted millions of workers to join existing organizations, where until now they have remained indifferent to unions.”

These social conquests had repercussion all over the world, especially in the industrialized one (Europe) which had similar explotaition conditions as the United States. Finland had the the 8-hour work day first introduced in 1908. Poland and Germany 10 years later, in 1908. France, Portugal and Spain in 1919. An interesting case is the UK, as Working hours in the UK are currently not limited by day, but by week, as first set by the Working Time Regulations of 1998, which introduced a limit of 40 hours per week for workers under 18, and 48 hours per week for over 18s. Before this regulation there was no legislative limit.

These anarchist unionists were executed in the United States for participating in the days of struggle for the achievement of the eight-hour workday, which originated in the strike that began on May 1, 1886 and its climax three days later, the May 4, at the Haymarket Revolt. From then on, it became a day for demanding improvements regarding the rights of workers that is celebrated throughout the world. It is a day to celebrate working class, a day to pay tribute to all of those who have sacrified even their life to improve current working conditions: from the Chicago strike to nowadays struggles being carried by the workers worldwide. Its establishment in most countries by a decision of the Socialist Workers Congress of the Second International, held in Paris in 1889.

 

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