The U.S. Congress made Labor Day a U.S. national holiday.


 

So, the first Monday in September is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country. 

Labor Day Legislation

Through the years the nation gave increasing emphasis to Labor Day. The first governmental recognition came through municipal ordinances passed during 1885 and 1886. From these, a movement developed to secure state legislation. The first state bill was introduced into the New York legislature, but the first to become law was passed by Oregon on February 21, 1887. During the year four more states — Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York — created the Labor Day holiday by legislative enactment. By the end of the decade Connecticut, Nebraska, and Pennsylvania had followed suit. By 1894, 23 other states had adopted the holiday in honor of workers, and on June 28 of that year, Congress passed an act making the first Monday in September of each year a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the territories.

Founder of Labor Day

More than 100 years after the first Labor Day observance, there is still some doubt as to who first proposed the holiday for workers.

Some records show that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a cofounder of the American Federation of Labor, was first in suggesting a day to honor those “who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold.”

But Peter McGuire’s place in Labor Day history has not gone unchallenged. Many believe that Matthew Maguire, a machinist, not Peter McGuire, founded the holiday. Recent research seems to support the contention that Matthew Maguire, later the secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of Machinists in Paterson, N.J., proposed the holiday in 1882 while serving as secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York. What is clear is that the Central Labor Union adopted a Labor Day proposal and appointed a committee to plan a demonstration and picnic.

The First Labor Day

The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union. The Central Labor Union held its second Labor Day holiday just a year later, on September 5, 1883.

In 1884 the first Monday in September was selected as the holiday, as originally proposed, and the Central Labor Union urged similar organizations in other cities to follow the example of New York and celebrate a “workingmen’s holiday” on that date. The idea spread with the growth of labor organizations, and in 1885 Labor Day was celebrated in many industrial centers of the country.

A Nationwide Holiday

The form that the observance and celebration of Labor Day should take was outlined in the first proposal of the holiday — a street parade to exhibit to the public “the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations” of the community, followed by a festival for the recreation and amusement of the workers and their families. This became the pattern for the celebrations of Labor Day. Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the economic and civic significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday preceding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the labor movement.

The character of the Labor Day celebration has undergone a change in recent years, especially in large industrial centers where mass displays and huge parades have proved a problem. This change, however, is more a shift in emphasis and medium of expression. Labor Day addresses by leading union officials, industrialists, educators, clerics and government officials are given wide coverage in newspapers, radio, and television.

The vital force of labor added materially to the highest standard of living and the greatest production the world has ever known and has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate, therefore, that the nation pay tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation’s strength, freedom, and leadership — the American worker.

 

 

Source: Department of Labor

Happy Labour Day ~ 5 Ways to Fight for Working Families on Labor Day


 A repost from 2019

Happy Labor Day! Labor Day is a day for celebrating the achievements and hard work of the American workforce. Working families are the economic backbone of our country, and our policies should support and value them accordingly: all workers deserve fair wages, safe work environments free from harassment and discrimination, and the time and flexibility they need to care for themselves and their loved ones.

5 Ways to Fight for Working Families on Labor Day

So today and every day, here are five ways you can thank and support working families:

Spread the word about workers’ rights. Knowledge is power, and in order for the law to be meaningful, workers must know and feel empowered to exercise their rights. Our state-by-state guide provides a comprehensive overview of federal, state, and local laws that support working families.

  1. Make sure workers know where to get legal help. We run a free and confidential legal clinic where workers call us with questions or when they think their workplace rights have been violated. You can too at 1-833-NEED-ABB (1-833-633-3222).
  2. Advocate for strong workplace protections. We’re fighting to pass laws across the country that guarantee fairness for pregnant workers (27 states down!), paid family and medical leave, paid sick time, flexible scheduling, breastfeeding protections, and more.
  3. Defend local progressive legislation. We’re working with advocates and elected officials across the country to defend local governments, who increasingly face obstacles to passing progressive legislation in the form of states blocking, or “preempting,” ordinances like paid sick days, increased minimum wage, and more.
  4. Fight back against efforts to roll back workers’ rights. It’s important to make our voices heard when workers’ rights are under attack. We must continue to speak out against the Trump administration’s demonstrated hostility towards workers, from the potential appointment of a Labor Secretary with a proven history of prioritizing corporate interests at the expense of workers to its efforts to make it legal to discriminate against LGTBQ workers.

Despite much progress, we still have a long way to go in the fight to secure basic workers’ rights and protections across the country. But this Labor Day, let’s pause and say thank you to working families for all that they do!

 

Warmly,

Dina and Sherry

Co-Founders & Co-Presidents

A Better Balance

resource: networkforgood.com

when the past keeps coming back … no lessons learned


In this era of trump, you would think we would be living our 21st Century lives but the past keeps coming back …    so, here’s a repost from ThinkProgress of things we need to be aware and hopefully get rid of by voting for the Democratic Party to end the era of trump ASAP

By ThinkProgress War Room 4/25/2013 

13 Reasons To Be Glad George W. Bush Is No Longer President

With the opening of the George W. Bush presidential library in Dallas, Texas there has been some creative re-telling of history and the Bush legacy — a legacy full of terrible consequences, intended and otherwise, that we’re still having to deal with to this very day.

Here’s a reminder from our ThinkProgress colleagues why you should still be happy that those 8 long Bush years are over:

  • Authorized the use of torture

Though the US Code bans torture, Bush personally issued a memorandum six days after the September 11th attacks instructing the CIA that it could use “enhanced interrogation techniques” against suspected terrorists. The methods included waterboarding, sleep deprivation, and “stress positions.” A recently-released bipartisan committee concluded it was “indisputable” that these techniques constituted torture, and that the highest authorities in the country bore responsibility for the creation of torture programs at Guantanamo Bay and CIA “black sites” around the world

  • Politicized climate science

Bush’s “do-nothing” approach to climate change prevented the U.S. from pursuing meaningful action. Though he claimed that global warming was a serious problem that was either a natural phenomenon or caused by humans, the administration routinely edited scientific reports to downplay the threat of climate change, censored CDC testimony that climate change was a public health threat, and promoted climate-denying studies financed by ExxonMobil. At the end of the Bush presidency, a top intelligence adviser warned the incoming president that climate change was a massive destabilizing national security threat that would lead to “Dust Bowl” conditions in the Southwest.

Rather than consolidating gains after the overthrow of the Taliban in Afghanistan, Bush and his neoconservative allies pushed for removing Saddam Hussein from power, kicking off a war that led to one mistake after another. Ten years later, the war is estimated to have cost cost up to $6 trillion and resulted in the death of more than 100,000 Iraqis, 4,000 Americans and another 31,000 wounded. Meanwhile, Afghanistan saw a resurgence of the Taliban after Bush shifted resources to Iraq.

  • Botched the response to Hurricane Katrina

Bush appointed Michael Brown — a man whose only real qualifications were political connections and a sting at the International Arabian Horse Association — to head the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in 2003 and he preceded to undo everything the Clinton Administration had done to make FEMA functional, botching the response to 2004′s Hurricane Frances so badly as to prompt calls for his firing. But Bush kept Brown on board and, as a detailed timeline of the response to Hurricane Katrina demonstrates, neither man took the storm seriously until it was too late. Bush, who famously said “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job” midway through the crisis, thus presided over the most deaths due to a single natural disaster in the United States since 1900.

  • Defunded stem cell research

At the turn of the century there was perhaps no greater hope for finding cures to illnesses ranging from Alzheimer’s to diabetes than ongoing stem cell research. But months after taking office, Bush eliminated all federal funding for any new research involving stem cells, citing a religious objection to the use of embryos — even though the embryos in question were byproducts from couples undergoing in vitro fertilization and would have been destroyed by IVF clinics regardless. Twice more during his presidency, Bush vetoed legislation that would have restored funding.

  • Required Muslim men to register with the government

Following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Bush’s Attorney General, John Ashcroft, instituted an anti-terrorism program to register all male immigrants between 18 and 40 years old from 20 Arab and South Asian countries. Thousands of innocent men came forward to register, only to be rounded up for minor visa violations. Roughly 1,000 men and boys in the process of applying for permanent residence were arrested and confined in standing-room-only centers, enduring invasive strip searches and beatings by guards. Many were deported, while others were held for months after their immigration cases were resolved, without a shred of evidence they had any links to terrorism.

  • Reinstated the global gag rule

On Bush’s first day in office he reinstated a rule that prevented any non-profit doing work overseas from using any of their own, private money to fund family planning services. This so-called “Global Gag Rule” posed a serious threat to international maternal health, but it also cut off funding for HIV/AIDS initiatives, child health programs, and water and sanitation efforts.

  • Supported anti-gay discrimination

In 2004, President Bush endorsed the Federal Marriage Amendment (FMA), which would have banned same-sex couples from marrying in the U.S. Constitution. The Massachusetts Supreme Court had just ruled in favor of marriage equality, and Bush hoped to block the ruling from taking effect because “a few judges and local authorities are presuming to change the most fundamental institution of civilization.” Though the FMA failed numerous times in Congress during Bush’s tenure, he exploited the issue of same-sex marriage to turn out conservative voters for the 2004 election. That year, 11 states added constitutional amendments outlawing same-sex marriage.

  • Further deregulated Wall Street

Under Bush, federal agencies eliminated regulations on predatory lending, capital requirements, and other Wall Street practices, allowing banks to engage in riskier and more destructive practices that contributed to the financial crisis that started on his watch. Bush’s Treasury Department also pushed for even further deregulation that would have given Wall Street more oversight over its own practices even after the housing collapse had begun.

  • Widened income inequality

The per-person benefits of Bush’s tax cuts accrued to the top one percent of Americans, as the rate for capital gains dropped to 15 percent. The CBO found that federal income taxes dropped far more as a percentage of the one percent’s income than for any other group after 2000.

  • Undermined worker protections

Under Bush, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, whose mission is to protect safe working conditions, issued 86 percent fewer rules or regulations and pulled 22 items from its agenda of proposed safety and health rules. The office’s funding and staff were also consistently reduced. Meanwhile, funding for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the agency charged with helping workers who claim discrimination against their employers, was similarly low and staffing fell even as the number of complaints increased, leading to a rising backlog of cases.

  • Ideological court appointments

Bush filled the federal bench with ideologues, including two-lifetime appointments to the Supreme Court. These conservatives believe that corporations should be able to buy and sell elections, ruled against equal pay for equal work, and have sought to undermine a woman’s right to choose.

  • Presided over a dysfunctional executive branch

A 2008 analysis by the Center for Public Integrity documented more than 125 executive branch failures over Bush’s two terms. These included government breakdowns on “education, energy, the environment, justice and security, the military and veterans affairs, health care, transportation, financial management, consumer and worker safety,” and others. “I think we’ll look back on this period as one of the most destructive periods in American public life . . . both in terms of policy and process,” Thomas E. Mann, a senior fellow at the nonpartisan Brookings Institution observed, noting “genuine distortion in the constitutional system, an exaggerated sense of presidential power and prerogative and acquiescence by a Republican Congress in the face of the first unified Republican government since Dwight Eisenhower.”

Miss Him Yet?

Then again, is it just me, or is this era of trump really feeling like more of the same, but it’s real doom and gloom?

The EB-1 Visa … a repost


By Debbie Lord, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

First lady Melania Trump became a U.S. citizen after getting a type of visa that is reserved for immigrants with “extraordinary ability,” according to a story in The Washington Post.

Who is eligible for an EB-1?
The EB-1 visa is not an easy document to get. Those who apply for one must be a member of one of three immigration classifications and must meet three of 10 criteria recognized by the USCIS.

You must meet three out of the 10 listed criteria below to prove extraordinary ability in your field:

  • Evidence of receipt of lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence
  • Evidence of your membership in associations in the field which demand outstanding achievement of their members
  • Evidence of published material about you in professional or major trade publications or other major media
  • Evidence that you have been asked to judge the work of others, either individually or on a panel
  • Evidence of your original scientific, scholarly, artistic, athletic, or business-related contributions of major significance to the field
  • Evidence of your authorship of scholarly articles in professional or major trade publications or other major media
  • Evidence that your work has been displayed at artistic exhibitions or showcases
  • Evidence of your performance of a leading or critical role in distinguished organizations
  • Evidence that you command a high salary or other significantly high remuneration in relation to others in the field
  • Evidence of your commercial successes in the performing arts

How did Melania Trump fit into the categories and evidence required?

for the complete article was at … ajc.com

~ the article seems to just scratch the surface imo and doesn’t really tell us if she was here before 1996 legally and how the process was paid for  – Nativegrl77

Say “NO” to Forced Labor this Labor Day


FF_PalmOilEverywhere_pepsi_v2.pngAs the Labor Day holiday in the United States approaches, many of us will take time to reflect upon and celebrate the achievements of American workers.

But living in a globalized economy where many of the goods we use every day are produced elsewhere, we should also take time to consider workers worldwide and what we as consumers must do to demand fair labor conditions for all. Palm oil touches most of our lives every day, and yet the living and working conditions of the people who harvest palm oil are foreign to most of us.

Millions of people work in the global palm oil industry, and thousands toil under inhumane conditions, including child labor and conditions of modern-day slavery. Companies like PepsiCo are buying palm oil without guaranteeing that the rights of workers making that palm oil are respected and upheld. Instead, PepsiCo has launched its ironic summer marketing campaign calling on consumers to just #LiveForNow and continue consuming PepsiCo products, rather than worry about the children and adults that are forced to work under inhumane conditions to produce palm oil for PepsiCo products.

This Labor Day, help us make sure that PepsiCo knows we won’t #LiveforNow by letting labor abuses and modern-day slavery persist in PepsiCo’s palm oil supply chain. If you haven’t already, please join our Twitter campaign to make sure PepsiCo hears your concerns today.

Here’s how:
1. Download your own sign, get a photo of yourself holding the sign in front of any Pepsi display, product, or logo.
2. Tweet the photo at @PepsiCo with your personalized Labor Day-inspired message, remembering to include #LiveForNow and #LaborDay.

Not sure what to write? Feel free to use the ideas below:

  • This #LaborDay I am asking @PepsiCo to ensure no slavery is in its #PalmOil supply chain, not just #LiveForNow
  • Hey @PepsiCo celebrate #LaborDay by ensuring slavery-free #palmoil in your products, don’t just #LiveForNow
  • .@PepsiCo #LiveForNow means protecting workers in your #palmoil supply chain #LaborDay
  • .@PepsiCo make #LaborDay every day – ensure your #palmoil is slavery-free #LiveForNow
  • .@PepsiCo #LiveForNow shouldn’t mean [your personal message here] #LaborDay

With your help, we can stand in solidarity with global palm oil workers and send a clear message to PepsiCo that cheap gimmicks won’t fool us to only #LiveForNow. PepsiCo has already responded to our campaign by releasing a new forest policy and palm oil commitment — a step in the right direction but not enough to eliminate Conflict Palm Oil. We know we’ve got the attention of PepsiCo executives, but we need your help to keep the pressure up and push PepsiCo to go all the way to eliminate slavery and protect the rights of palm oil workers in its supply chain.

Together, we can make PepsiCo understand that #LiveForNow means ending modern slavery and labor abuses in the palm oil industry.

In solidarity,
Robin Averbeck
Senior Campaigner
Rainforest Action Network

P.S. Not on Twitter yet? Don’t worry, it’s simple to get setup and tweeting in minutes.

5 Minute Guide to Twitter Activism:

Most people have heard about Twitter, but not everybody has an account. Here’s a quick and easy guide to getting setup to Tweet your outrage over Conflict Palm Oil in less than 5 minutes.
2. Create a Tweet! (Be sure to upload your photo by clicking the Camera icon).
3. Post your feelings on PepsiCo’s Conflict Palm Oil use! Use the hashtag #LiveForNow in your Tweet so others can find it.

http://www.ran.org/