What is Labor Day:
by Anna Noles - Panther Press Reporter
Labor Day is always the first Monday in September. This year it is on the fourth. Labor Day is important to us because it represents the men and women who fought hard for workers’ rights in the 19th century during the labor movement. Most of our rights, rights that many people don’t really appreciate, come from the labor movement. These rights include sick leave, paid time off, overtime pay, and safe working conditions. There could not be any freedom or liberty without economic freedom for the working class. We celebrate Labor Day with picnics, parades, barbecues, and fireworks. Labor Day also represents, for young adults and children, the end of summer and the start of a new school year. Did you know that Labor Day is also known as International Workers’ Day and May Day?
The definition of Labor Day is: A day or a public holiday of festivals for the hard-working people of the United States, Canada (the first Monday in September) and in other countries (May 1st.) The person who is generally given credit for Labor Day is Peter J. McGuire, who was a union leader who formed the United Brotherhood of Carpenters in 1881. McGuire proposed the idea of a celebration to the Central Labor Union of New York to honor American workers. In 1894, Eugene V. Debs assembled the Pullman Strike; the Pullman Strike was a nationwide protest, the effect of which brought the economy to a stop. In the end, the strike produced federal labor laws to protect workers. President Cleveland made Labor Day a national holiday in 1894.