Labor Day, 2016
Today, Labor Day turns 134 years young. Bringing people together to celebrate their work and to show their strength in numbers– that’s why the very first Labor Day was started.
Each year on this weekend, we honor the social and economic achievements of American workers and the contributions they have made to making our country great. Without them, there would be no weekends, no eight-hour work day, no ban on child labor, among many other things that we take for granted.
We’ve come a long way and we have a lot to celebrate. But there’s still more work left to be done.
Yes, unemployment rates have fallen, but too many of our brothers and sisters still struggle to make ends meet. No American who works full time should live in poverty. We must ensure that all Americans are earning a living wage.
We must protect and preserve Social Security and Medicare—59 million Americans are counting on it. We must deliver on the promise that we made to seniors, who have worked hard and sacrificed, and who deserve the retirement security they’ve paid into their whole lives.
Work is about more than a paycheck.
It’s about pride– pride in a job well done, pride in providing for your family, pride in seeing your kids do better than you did.
It’s about dignity– knowing you contributed to our great country in the best way you know how and knowing that one day they can retire with dignity.
And, it’s about giving everyone their fair shot at the American Dream.
We must commit ourselves each and every day to doing the hard work needed to strengthen our economy and ensure continued prosperity for all. We must continue to use the ingenuity, entrepreneurial spirit, strength and resilience that makes our workers unique to bolster the middle class.
Today, let us celebrate the one thing that makes our workforce the best in the world —the American people.