Up to 700 people took part in this year’s May Day march in the city on Saturday.
Organised by the Derry Trades Council, the keynote speech was given by Brendan Harley from the Housing Executive Branch of NIPSA.
Focussing on the need to keep the Housing Executive public, it was well received.
Liam Gallagher, Secretary of the Derry Trades Council said, “We were very pleased with the turnout, and there were representatives from all the major unions including NIPSA, Unite, Unison, the Fire Brigade union and INTO. There were also representatives from the Pink Ladies and the Woodlands Speech and Language Unit.
“In my opening speech I talked about the origins of May Day from the Haymarket protests in Chicago in 1846 where workers who demanded a 48 hour week and holidays were murdered. It’s unbelieveable that so many years later workers in Derry have to work zero contract hours with absolutely no rights.
“We are calling on our politicans to do more and be held accountable - zero contract hours should not be allowed to continue
“The City of Culture brought a great feelgood factor but the economic legacy that was promised has not materialised. In fact, Derry now has the highest unemployment rate in the north and the numbers of unemployed are higher than in 1975. Over 1200 manufacturing jobs have gone since 1980 and 2500 young people have left the city since 2011. That has to change.”