Industrial Workers of the World Day draws our attention to the importance of industrial workers. Today, industry is more and more modernized, and it seems to many people that enterprises are already fully automated and robotic. But this is not true: there are still many workers in the world who work in factories and industry and produce the goods we need.
In June 1905, workers in industrial Chicago founded an international union called the Industrial Workers of the World. Then the time for such a workers’ organization was ripe – in the industrial world there was a lot of tension, as many workers were dissatisfied with the treatment of their employers.
In the next decades, the IWW devoted itself to defending the rights of industrial workers and fighting for decent and fair treatment. Before the outbreak of the First World War, members of the IWW opposed the participation of the United States. The government used this as a pretext for repression against the IWW – many of its members were arrested, and they were sentenced to long terms – up to 20 years – in prison.
The author of the well-known books about Tarzan and the Martians, E. R. Burroughs, in his novel The Land That Time Forgot, wrote out a sharply negative hero – a member of the IWW. He was a criminal and an informer. Aggressive attacks by the press and intellectuals led to people treating the IWW with contempt and staging the lynching of its members. In 1919, war veteran Wesley Everest died this way – after being tortured, he was hanged three times in 3 different places. According to investigators at the time, Everest committed suicide. Three times and in three different locations…
How to take part
Celebrate Industrial Workers of the World Day by paying respect to the people who make most of the items we use every day.
- Congratulate your fellow workers on the holiday.
- Post about it on your social media.
- Tell your children where the things we use every day come from.
When is Industrial Workers of the World Day celebrated in 2023?
Industrial Workers of the World Day is observed on June 27 each year.