Universal Labor Duty

Soviet of People’s Commissars, Universal Labor Duty. October 31, 1918

Original Source: Sobranie uzakonenii i rasporiazhenii raboche-krestian’skogo pravitel’stva, 1918, Nos. 87-88, pp. 1099-1100.

1. All citizens of the RSFSR, with the exception of those specified in Articles 2 and 3, are subject to compulsory labor.

2. The following are exempt from compulsory labor: (a) persons under sixteen years of age; (b) persons over fifty years of age; (c) persons who are incapacitated as a result of injury or illness.

3. The following are temporarily exempted from compulsory labor: (a) persons who as a result of illness or injury are temporarily incapacitated, for a period necessary to their recovery; (b) pregnant women, for a period of eight weeks before and eight weeks after confinement.

4. Students in all institutions of learning perform compulsory labor at school.

5. Permanent or temporary incapacity must be established by medical examination..

Note 2. Persons subject to compulsory labor and not engaged in socially useful work may be summoned by local soviets of deputies for public work on conditions determined by the sections of labor in agreement with local trade-union councils.

6. Work takes the form of: (a) organized collaboration; (b) individual services; (c) performance of special services.

7. Conditions of labor in state (Soviet) institutions are regulated by wage-scales approved by the… People’s Commissariat of Labor.

8. Conditions of labor in all other establishments… are regulated by wage-scales established by trade unions in concurrence with the directors or owners of the establishments … and with the approval of the People’s Commissariat of Labor

Source: The Code of Labor Laws of Soviet Russia (New York: Russian Soviet Government Bureau, 1920), pp. 14-46.

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