All-Ukrainian Council of Trade Unions

All-Ukrainian Council of Trade Unions (Всеукраїнська рада професійних спілок; Vseukrainska rada profesiinykh spilok or ВУРПС; VURPS). Formed in Kharkiv in 1924 at the second All-Ukrainian Congress of Trade Unions, VURPS encompassed all-Ukrainian industrial trade union committees. The council was established on the foundations laid by preceding central trade organizations. In May 1918 the All-Ukrainian Central Council of Trade Unions (Utsentrprof) was formed, composed primarily of representatives of anti-Bolshevik parties. At the 1919 trade union congress in Kharkiv the Utsentrprof was dissolved, and the Bolsheviks assumed the leadership of the trade union movement. The movement consequently became subservient to Moscow, which in 1920 created the Bureau for the South of Russia (Biuro Yuga Rossii), soon renamed the Ukrainian Bureau of the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions (VTsSPS). In 1924 VURPS was established. By 1929 it represented over two million trade union members, and its presidium, which was subordinated to the VTsSPS in Moscow, directed the all-Ukrainian committees and district union councils. In 1937 the VTsSPS, with the aim of complete centralization, liquidated all republican, krai, and oblast trade union councils, including VURPS. Many VURPS trade union leaders had been dismissed and exiled between 1933 and 1937. After the Second World War the central trade union institution, the Ukrainian Republican Council of Trade Unions (URRPS), was reinstated in Ukraine; oblast councils also resumed their activity. The central republican, oblast, raion, and municipal committees of member unions operated alongside the trade union councils.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 1 (1984).]




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