Society requires work to be able to walk. Employers need employees just as much as the other way around and, therefore, society advances thanks to that relationship. However, the conditions between these two parties have not always been equal. To predict exactly when labor law arises, prior reflection on what has happened so far is necessary.
Enjoying some privileges such as weekends, vacations or less abusive work hours is the result of a collective effort over many years. Let us remember that there have been times of slavery, feudal lords, industrial workers with schedules of more than 14 hours a day...
Fortunately, today we enjoy a different type of employee-employer relationship. In fact, you can even count on a labor lawyer If you need a professional to defend your rights. However, we are not aware of those rights that we currently enjoy but did not exist before. It is advisable to look back and see everything we have achieved.
How does labor law arise?
Labor law was born as a response to the need to protect workers from abuse by his superiors. It is therefore a branch of law that regulates these relationships so that they are fair to both parties.
When labor law arises, the employer has great power over his workers. These, defenseless and without legal support, obey his directives. This legislation stops this trend by limiting the freedoms of companies with the purpose of protecting the worker. We can affirm that labor law, unlike private law for example, will always have a protectionist purpose in the sense that it will try to balance the unequal status between employer and employee.
When does labor law arise?
The origin of labor law does not have a specific date. Rather, it is a chain of events and consequences that trigger its appearance.
To contextualize more precisely, it is necessary to start with the most primitive societies in which harvesting and planting led to the first professions and, therefore, the first relationships between workers and employers. Obviously these were totally unequal relationships.
In this context of injustice, a feeling of dissatisfaction begins to create. The search for how labor law emerged takes us to ancient Egypt. And we must go back to this time to find the first strike of which historians have references. According to their studies, the workers refused to continue with the construction work of what would be the tomb of Ramses III. This fact, however, is more of an anecdote than a significant fact regarding when labor law emerged.
The next historical context on which we must set our sights is the Roman empire. In this society there were labor contracts, although extremely precarious. In fact, in most cases the worker was not only an employee, but also a vassal since his boss was both his lord or his owner. It is important to have the reference of this context to understand when labor law arises because in ancient Rome the employer had a series of obligations such as feeding his workers and protecting them from other lords, thieves or other harmful individuals. Although these responsibilities are very basic and the relationship between both parties remains tremendously unequal, a series of extremely basic rights are beginning to emerge.
This trend that occurred in the Roman Empire lasted throughout the Middle Ages and a great change was not seen until the Industrial Revolution. The transition from feudalism to industrialism streamlines everything. And changing from a class society to a class society means one of the basic turning points in understanding how labor law emerges.
The inhumane conditions in which individuals have to work in factories foster the emergence of class consciousness. This would not have been possible if the population had not gathered in cities, unlike in feudalism. Karl Marx and Friederich Engels with their “Communist Manifesto” also represent a before and after to understand when labor law emerged.
This context glimpses the fact that workers have common interests and fight for the same cause. Popular power achieves historical milestones such as the First International (International Workers Association), the denial of work to children under 9 years of age or Work Accident Insurance.
Another of the dates mentioned is May 1, 1886. Americans took to the streets on strike to demonstrate against the abusive working hours that, in most cases, exceeded 14 hours. His achievement: moving to an 8-hour day.
As you can see, it is difficult to locate a date to discover when labor law arises. This is the result of an evolution, of a lot of struggle and insistence. Thanks to all the workers, today you can count on a Valencia labor lawyer to defend your interests.
At Arranz we are very aware that the rights enjoyed by workers Today they are the result of many struggles. Therefore, we work every day to continue defending them. We know the importance of looking back, seeing everything we have achieved and to do so, knowing when labor law arises is essential. As a worker, exercising your trade in full conditions is essential. We put a Valencia labor lawyer at your disposal if you find yourself in an adverse situation.