Dissolution of German Trade Unions

5/2/1933

To encourage the working class to support the new regime, the Nazis sought to take over the trade unions. Union officials and leaders became targets of harassment and imprisonment, and union leaders were ousted from their positions, but the Nazi trade organization failed to establish a power base among the working class. On May 1, the regime held opulent May Day festivities, including parades and a festive speech by Hitler. The next day, the headquarters of all the free trade unions were seized and their leaders thrown into prison. In the course of May and June, the unions were dissolved and a German Labor Front was established under Robert Ley.