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On the Occasion of the First of May: Unity is the Key to Victory Over the Dictatorial Regime and Moving Towards Freedom and Prosperity!

On the Occasion of the First of May: Unity is the Key to Victory Over the Dictatorial Regime and Moving Towards Freedom and Prosperity!

Workers, Wage Earners and Justice Seekers!

We wish you a happy International Labor Day and wish you success in achieving your demands and a better life. The Left Party of Iran (People’s Fadaian) supports your courageous and right-seeking struggles and puts the defense of your rights in the center of its activities and fights for its realization.

May 1st is an official holiday in many countries of the world. In Iran, this auspicious day has been celebrated by the workers in various ways despite the ban and restrictions for more than a hundred years, and while celebrating it, the workers raise their demands and strive to make them come true.

First of May this year has a different mood due to its coincidence with the revolutionary movement of “Women, Life, Freedom” and the mass strike of workers in ninety-four companies and the spirit and atmosphere of the society. Supporting the strike of workers and the charter of twenty organizations and trying to establish a more dynamic link between the current revolutionary movement and the labor movement and the demand for the release of political prisoners are the most important tasks facing the labor movement on this year's Labor Day.

The situation of most people has worsened in every aspect during the last year. Poverty and soaring prices, injustice, discrimination and repression have become more severe and environmental disasters have become a dangerous threat to the country. On the other hand, we are witnessing the continuation of the revolutionary movement of “Women, Life, Freedom” and the formation of unprecedented solidarity in the society during the past few decades and the intensification of the opposition's activity, which aims to remove the regime from power and replace it with a democratic government.

In addition to that and in continuation of numerous protests and strikes by workers, teachers, nurses and medical staff, pensioners and other wage and salary earners, a large strike by workers and employees of contracting companies in the oil and petrochemical industry and a number of mines and steel production units with a demand for wage increase and other welfare demands are in progress. The main demand of the strikers is the cancellation of the 27% increase in the salary proposed by the “Supreme Labor Council” and the 79% increase in wages.

The success of workers' strikes in dozens of industrial units and other protests requires the support of wider groups of people and supporters and fighters of the revolutionary movement of “Women, Life, Freedom” and unity and solidarity and coordination among the strikers.

The regime's attack on the rights and achievements of the labor movement, along with their systematic repression, has been going on for decades. As a result of this attack, most protective laws have been canceled or suspended, the real wages and purchasing power of workers have been reduced every year, the working conditions, life and livelihood of workers have worsened and the exploitation of labor has intensified. The situation of women is worst. The doors of the labor market are closed to them, at least 27.5% of women are unemployed, their wages and salaries are 30% less than men, and they face more harassment and restrictions in the workplace.

Wages below the poverty line, temporizing 94% of the workforce, increasing victims of occupational accidents and the majority of workers falling below the poverty line, and an unprecedented class gap, have been the consequences of the regime's approaches until now.

This aggression has gained more dimensions and momentum during the Raisi’s presidency. The regime intends to uproot the remnants of labor rights and make complete lawlessness the rule. Workers and other wage and salary earners, despite widespread protests due to the rule of tyranny and the suppression of labor unions and parties, and the scattered nature of the protests, have not been able to protect themselves against the unbridled attacks of the parasitic capitalists and the violation of their rights.

Workers should take advantage of every possibility and opportunity to join unions and labor parties so that they can defend their rights. Without organization, neither effective solidarity and unity can be achieved, nor can the achievements of the struggle be preserved. The main reason for thousands of annual strikes being ineffective is the scattered nature of protests, the lack of an independent and militant organization, and the lack of solidarity and connection with other disaffected and protesting social movements and groups.

In the current situation, we emphasize on creating strong and stable links between the labor movement, the “Women, Life, Freedom” movement and other movements in the society. We also consider the combination of economic, livelihood and justice-seeking demands with freedom-seeking and political demands as one of the conditions for the success of workers' demands protests and also effective in the victory of the “Women, Life, Freedom” movement and emphasize on it.

Last year, the prosecution and imprisonment of independent labor activists intensified due to the spread of labor movement protests, and harsher punishments were applied to them. Hundreds of teachers and workers, including a number of prominent leaders of teachers and workers, were arrested, some of whom are still in prison, and the arrest, summons, and trial of others are still ongoing.

There is a strong need to intensify the efforts for the release of trade union, civil and political prisoners and put it on the agenda and do not spare any help to the families of the prisoners.

The valuable support of labor unions for the rights of Iranian workers and the revolutionary movement and the victims of the regime's repression apparatus last year played a prominent role in the continuation and expansion of the struggle.

The Left Party of Iran (People’s Fadaian) supports the protests and large-scale strikes of workers and employees of contracting companies in the oil and petrochemical industry and a number of mines and production units, which are ongoing with the demand for wage increases and other welfare demands. We support the fight against the repressive measures of the Islamic Republic, especially the fight against the chemical attack on schools and the massive arrests of civil and political activists, and at the same time, we encourage the workers to unite and strengthen solidarity, organize and establish links with the “Women, Life, Freedom” movement for the removal of the Islamic Republic, which is the main obstacle to the progress and welfare of the people.

Political-Executive Board of the Left Party of Iran (People’s Fadaian)

April 29, 2023

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