The honorary title "Hero of the Socialist Labour" exists since 1938 and is awarded to civilians for having performed outstanding feats in the field of labour, such as an important invention or the implementation of pioneering techniques. Recipients of the medal will be awarded the title: Hero of Socialist Labour simultaneously, they will also be awarded the Order of Lenin and they will receive a Diploma from the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet. The title can be awarded more than once, however, the Order of Lenin only once. The accompanying medal was instituted by Decree dated May 22nd, 1940 by the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet. The medal resembles that of the "Hero of the Soviet Union". It consists of a 15.5 gramm Golden, Five-Pointed, Star with the hammer and sickle on the obverse and on the reverse the text "Hero of Socialist Labour" in Cyrillic. The medal hangs from a red ribbon with hanger. The hanger measures 15 x 20 mm.
The title was awarded to Josef Stalin and Medal nr. 1 was awarded to him on his 60th birthday. Some 20.500 medals have been awarded, 180 for a second time and 16 for a third. The policy of multiple conferment was abolished by Directive of the Supreme Soviet on August 22nd, 1988.