We all know what Labor Day is. At least those of us in the United States do. It is the first Monday in the month of September that we come out of classes and do not show up for work. Well, some of us work on Labor Day. Labor Day was founded to be a celebration of the American Worker, so how come if you work in a non-essential field (such as a hospital, police station, armed forces, or other public service work) you don’t get the opportunity to attend this celebration? How is it that the bereaved, mistreated by their superiors and treated with humiliation, are forced to work on the day that should celebrate their bravery and bravery? Even if we have to be paid double (sometimes only full-time employees), why do those of us have to work in non-essential fields on a federal holiday recognized by all major institutions?
It is unjust that this cruelty should be done to us when we have the chance to change it. If it’s a federal holiday, the companies that employ us, and the companies that control the means of production, should be required to allow any employee who asks for days off. This, again, excludes the fields that are essential for everyday functions. This mainly pertains to most minimum wage jobs that already treat their employees as if the workplace is a sweatshop and it is petty labor that can be abused and pushed to breaking point. These entry-level jobs, which are only essential for making a profit, rather than having a positive effect on the public, should be forced to recognize the federal holiday for both full-time and part-time workers.
This gap has been significant for quite some time and is only widening as each generation passes the torch to the next. The gap between a full-time employee and a part-time employee is significantly different than one might think. Part-time employees get almost no or no benefits at all compared to their full-time counterparts. While in one company, an employee who stays for overtime may receive one and a half times the pay of his regular pay, a part-time employee stays the same pay he started with. This doesn’t even imply that the part-time worker is more likely to be fired from his job to make up for lost manpower in a field where he has almost no training.
This does not only apply to the new employee. Even with seniority, these huge differences in benefits and treatment are extreme. In general, the part-time worker is only expected to be there for a period of one year or less as he either moves on with his life or decides to retire. This ensures that important decisions are made that generally force the part-time worker to take on either the more dangerous or the less enjoyable jobs. Returning to the point of Labor Day, it can be seen from this gap how the part-time worker can also be treated with regard to this federal holiday. The cases in which a part-time employee, or a full-time employee who is not yet among the senior members, is forced to work on vacation is remarkable when compared to the management, senior employees and those who have the good graces of the management.
Returning to the question: is it moral to work on Labor Day? I would say no. I do not believe it is moral to force workers to work on a public holiday that the unions urged to be hired. I don’t believe it’s moral to force a person in a non-essential job like retail or fast food to work in the guts of the sweatshops that employ them for cheap, untrained labor. The millennial generation is seen by the old guard as lazy or privileged. While I agree that the generation is privileged, I don’t believe it’s lazy. I believe it has the voices and influence needed to actually change policy. If we voted as one, our sheer numbers and outrage would allow non-essential workers to get a day off.