Centennial Hatchery strike 1973. (Maple Ridge Museum/Special to the Maple Ridge News)

Centennial Hatchery strike 1973. (Maple Ridge Museum/Special to the Maple Ridge News)

Eighties a busy decade for labour disputes, says museum curator

Maple Ridge experienced at least six major strikes in the mid to late 1980s

The first Monday of September marks a day off for many workers in Canada, and has been a designated statutory holiday since 1894.

Labour Day celebrates the achievement of the workers, stemming all the way back to 1872 when a parades through the streets of Toronto to secure shorter working days – often referred to as the Nine Hour Movement.

Shea Henry, curator of the Maple Ridge Museum, said the evidence of labour action from Maple Ridge comes from the recent history of unionized workers, the 1980’s being particularly rich in labour strikes.

“In 1985 there was a B.C. teacher’s strike that came to Maple Ridge, local students also led a strike in support of the negotiations resuming. In 1981 Maple Ridge’s 170 municipal employees went on strike,” Henry explained, additionally listing the Ruskin Cedar Mill strike of 1985, Meadow Gardens Golf Club strike of 1988, and Centennial Hatchery strike of 1973.

”The oldest strike we have evidence for is from the Hammond Cedar Mill when the Chinese workers at the mill went on strike,” Henry said, explaining wage gaps and being undervalued led to the 1923 protest. “Not being unionized, these workers were simply fired and replaced.”

Historically, workers celebrated the day with parades, speeches, games, competitions, and picnics to truly mark a day dedicated to the worker.

The holiday promoted working-class solidarity and belonging during a time of rapid industrialization, though physical celebrations and commemoration have significantly shrunk since the Second World War.

Labour Day around the world is generally linked with International Worker’s Day on May 1, and many iterations are marked at different times during the year.

Canada and the United States are the only two countries to share Labour Day during the first week of September.

_________________________________

Is there more to this story?

Email: ryan.uytdewilligen@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter

_________________________________

Labourmaple ridge

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Ridge Meadows RCMP Insp. Wendy Mehat celebrates a community award from her time with the Surrey detachment. (Special to The News)
Ridge Meadows RCMP officer wins honour

Insp. Mehat chosen for Community Leader Award from Surrey posting

Maple Ridge city hall. (THE NEWS – files)
Maple Ridge city council approces Lougheed transit corridor concept plan

Plan aims to create an urban environment with a focus on pedestrians, bicycles, and green features

Pitt Meadows author Amanda Muratoff. (Kyle Cumming/Special to The News)
Pitt Meadows author releases seventh book in fantasy series

Rise of the Renegades is part of a series Amanda Muratoff has been writing with Kayla Mansur

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Nov. 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. daily COVID-19 cases hits record 941 on Tuesday

Further restrictions on indoor exercise take effect

(Pixabay.com)
Man, 28, warned by Kootenay police to stop asking people to marry him

A woman initially reported the incident to police before they discovered others had been popped the question

Winston Blackmore (left) and James Oler (right) were sentenced on separate charges of polygamy this week in Cranbrook Supreme Court.
No more charges expected in Bountiful investigation, special prosecutor says

Special prosecutor says mandate has ended following review of evidence from Bountiful investigations

(Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Refuse to follow B.C.’s mask mandate? Face a $230 fine

Masks are now required to be worn by all British Columbians, 12 years and older

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

BC Teachers' Federation President Teri Mooring is asking parents of school-aged children to encourage the wearing of masks when possible in schools. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
LETTER: Teachers union encourages culture of mask wearing in B.C. schools

BCTF President Teri Mooring asks parents to talk with children about wearing masks in school

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speak to the media about the COVID-19 virus outside Rideau Cottage in Ottawa, Friday, Nov. 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada’s inability to manufacture vaccines in-house will delay distribution: Trudeau

First doses of COVID-19 vaccine expected in first few months of 2021, prime minister says

Police lights
Vancouver elementary school locked down after unknown man walks into classroom

Police arrested the man and sent him for a psych evaluation

Most Read