Why do we have weekends? The importance of Labor Day

Local News

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) – Labor Day is often seen as a day to cookout or spend more time with family.

However, without Labor Day, many of the workplace innovations that are often overlooked, were fought for by many.

In the mid-1800s, working conditions in our country were unkind. It was common for adults and children to work six or seven days a week with twelve hour days. Taking a day off could lead to one losing its job.

Labor strikes, like the Pullman Strike, paved the way for some of the workplace freedoms that are so enjoyed today.

Aaron Warren with the IBEW said that we would not be where we are today without organized labor groups.

“People died because of the terrible working conditions that they were subjected to,” Warren said. “To be able to fight for better working conditions and workers rights is at the forefront of organized labor.”

Eugene V. Debs was a Terre Haute native and was one of the leaders of the Pullman Strike.

His efforts paved the way for the five day work week, overtime, weekends and plenty of other workplace innovations.

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