For years the labor unions of Cedar Rapids have paved the path to good-paying jobs that have been around for generations.

On Monday, September 7, union locals are celebrating Labor Day in a different way.

The traditional large picnic events for union members are few and far between in 2020, thanks to Covid 19. Instead families will likely enjoy backyard cookouts and small gatherings with close friends.

Unions of course, play a prominent role in Labor Day. As you celebrate your day off with pay from work, consider these points:

American labor unions are the reason we have 40 hour work-weeks. Before unions organized the workforce, many shops and factories would make workers pull longer shifts to meet production needs instead of hiring more help.

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You can thank a union for the paid vacation time you get from your employer. Whether you call it paid time off or sick days, PTO provides workers the time off need to get well and recharge.

Another thing you can give unions credit for is cost-of-living raises. Not all companies offer COLA allowances but many unionized jobs do.

Unions have improved workplace safety with needed regulations. Unions helped create the Human Resource departments of modern business, and have been providing fair wage negotiations for it members. Unions offer new workers apprenticeships and job training.

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Over the past 100 years, labor has built the United States and Labor Unions have built the American middle class. Good paying jobs, collective bargaining, and work benefits, are all part of what unions have accomplished.

Regardless of how you celebrate, you can thank a union for creating this national holiday we call Labor Day.

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