Many of us will enjoy a three-day break this weekend, often with little thought to why the extra day – Labour Day – was added as a Canadian holiday.
As a little bit of a history lesson, it has it origins almost 150 years ago when an anti-labour law was invoked to stop strike action underway in Toronto. Thousands marched in support of the workers and in opposition to what Prime Minister-of-the-day John A. Macdonald called a “barbarous” law. He subsequently had it repealed and Labour Day was initiated.
It was originally celebrated on May 1, but a few decades in it was shifted to the first Monday in September, and that’s now the national holiday we use to celebrate the achievements of workers in Canada.
So, obviously, Labour Day may feel like a ceremonial end of summer, but its roots are deeper and there’s is much to celebrate.
I chose to take a few moments on this particular Monday each year to think of all those who have to work – despite the holiday.
For me, that doesn’t mean just organized labour groups. Any workers.
I’m not just talking the retail clerks run off their feet with back-to-school parents scrambling to get their kids ready for the first day of class on Tuesday.
Nor, am I’m just thinking of those dedicated teachers who are putting the final touches on their lesson plans and finalized their materials, so they, too, can head back into the classes to infuse some learnin’ into our future leaders.
I’m thinking of the truckers, health care professionals, emergency crews, farmers, child care providers, construction and maintenance crews, transportation workers, and honestly millions of others (the list goes on into infinity, or so it seems).
Most of all, I’m especially appreciative of my coworkers – a team of incredibly community-minded sorts, who I have the privilege of working with daily as we strive to bring readers the news from Langley.
It’s uplifting to know there is still people with such strong work ethics and devotion to community.
Thanks to all the labourers out there toiling today – and through the rest of the year – to make this a community, this province, and this country the place we proudly call home.
This is the perfect time to reflect on all your hard work!
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