Red Clydeside: A history of the labour movement in Glasgow 1910-1932


May Day greetings: stern fights and victory ahead, May 1932

image from Red Clydeside collection

This May Day newspaper was published by the Scottish council of the NUWM and sold at May Day marches and parades throughout Scotland in 1932. The newspaper served the purpose of illustrating to people in the wider labour movement the work being done by the NUWM in fighting for the rights of the unemployed.

In the year this paper was published, 1932, the total number of unemployed in Britain stood at 2,750,000 and the government introduced legislation which brought further hardship to the massed ranks of the unemployed and their families. Unemployment benefit was cut by 10% across the board and the government introduced the 'Means Test'.

The NUWMs public face was as organiser's of the Hunger Marches but they were also responsible for campaigning against the 'Means Test', representing members in tribunals and organising social activities for the unemployed. The leader of the NUWM, Wal Hannington, was reported as saying that the real work of the NUWM was in maintaining and helping to preserve the dignity of unemployed workers and their families.

Source: Gallacher Memorial Library, Glasgow Caledonian University Special Collections and Archives