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Labor Day honors deserving American workforce

Labor Day is coming Monday, and we’re sure many of you will be taking the opportunity for a little fun – whether that’s a backyard cookout, a day at the lake or a long afternoon nap.

Some consider Labor Day as marking the unofficial “end” of summer – although we know here in Alabama, there are plenty of hot sunny days still ahead. Nevertheless, with fall days not too far away, Labor Day weekend often provides the perfect chance to splash into a final pool day, soak up some rays, set off for a local fishing spot or even take a mini-vacation to knock off the stress of beginning another school year.

However, Labor Day is rooted in something a little deeper than a chance to relax and eat good food – and we’d like to remind you to take a moment to honor that history, in the midst of your holiday plans.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Labor Day was formed out of the U.S. 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,” the DOL explains.

Our American workforce has taken a hit over the past year and a half. Many workers have experienced challenges like never before. Whether or not a business was judged “essential” at the beginning of the coronavirus shutdown, each has had to deal with its own share of obstacles and setbacks.

Everyone from the boss all the way down to the 9-5 worker has been forced to take a hard look at what their work means, how it might change, and how to regroup and still provide goods and services despite a global pandemic.

With that in mind, Labor Day might be more important than ever this year.

As the DOL notes, “On June 28, 1894, Congress passed an act making the first Monday in September of each year a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the territories.”

Labor Day has been around a long time, and though we continue to adjust to the changing business environment and national economy, the American workforce is going to continue to be a crucial cornerstone of our country.

So this Labor Day, let’s honor those workers who help create life as we know it. From frontline heroes and service providers to small business owners, restaurant servers, government employees and teachers, to real estate agents, attorneys, jewelers and accountants, to loggers, lawn care professionals, florists, customer service representatives and – well, we could go on – everyone works hard to make our community what it is. We all play a part.

As the DOL notes, “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 pays tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation’s strength, freedom and leadership – the American worker.”

Let’s remember the American worker – and, closest to home, the Franklin County worker – no matter what job he or she might have.

There’s bound to be plenty of fun on tap for this weekend, but maybe part of our holiday can be dedicated to thankfulness for those who make this life possible.

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