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Episode 184: From 1800s to Today: Labor Day Reflections 2022

About the Show:

It’s Labor Day here in the United States. The first Monday of September marks the end of Summer and the start of School in some areas – except NWA, where our kids have been in school for several weeks now, and maybe a reason to put away white until next year – but that might not be a thing.

Labor Day became official back in the late 1880s when labor movements began gaining steam while fighting for wages and, more importantly, better working conditions and an 8-hour workday.    

In 1894 after dealing with the Pullman Railway Car strike, President Grover Cleveland struck a conciliatory tone by making Labor Day a national holiday.  Around the world, they honor workers on May 1st, which is called May Day. For a while here in the US, we celebrated May Day and Labor Day. Still, the latter eventually won out for a variety of reasons, including the fact that the Marxist International Socialist Congress started May Day.  

So here we are in our country’s new era of work and labor. Coming out of the Pandemic has forced everyone to reconsider how they do work and, more importantly, what work should look like. Many of us got used to working from home and the flexibility this provides.  This is a far cry from the factories and labor-intensive industries that dotted our country when Labor Day started. 

There is undoubtedly a movement underfoot to improve working conditions and opportunities here in the US, and here in Northwest Arkansas. Many programs are available to people who want to pivot in their careers and find new meaningful work, and many upskilling programs are coming online every day.  

We even featured the excellent folks from Skills Lab Training on episode 109 of the podcast, where we talked about ways that the next generation of workers here in Northwest Arkansas are being prepared for success in the labor force. 

The future does look bright, and there is opportunity everywhere.   

Happy Labor Day!

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