Labor Day is a time not only to celebrate working people and their contributions to our society but to remember the struggles that workers endured to achieve the many benefits we now enjoy and take for granted: the eight-hour day, workers’ compensation, overtime pay, pensions, health and safety laws, Social Security, Medicare, vacation days, unemployment compensation, family medical leave, a restriction on child labor, a minimum wage and the right to organize for collective bargaining.
Labor Day is also a time to reflect on the current condition of workers in various industries, not only in the United States but throughout the world, who experience low wages, hazardous working conditions, discrimination, unfair treatment on the job, lack of health care benefits, the constant threat of unemployment and plant closure. Labor Day provides a unique opportunity for the religious community, the labor movement and other worker advocates to rediscover our common bonds: social justice, equality, the dignity and respect of all people, economic justice and fair treatment in the workplace. It calls us to recommit ourselves to work together in partnership to be a witness to actualizing these values.
Interfaith Worker Justice (IWJ and the AFL-CIO invite leaders in both the religious community and the labor movement, congregations, workers, worker advocates and union members to participate in Labor in the Pulpits this Labor Day weekend to highlight the many ways in which faith, work and the labor movement are intertwined in bringing forth a new vision for justice in our local communities.
For more than a decade, tens of thousands of members of congregations around the country have listened to union leaders and activists speak about their experiences as people of faith and union members during Labor Day weekend worship services.
Through this program, congregations have been educated about the connections between faith and work, new friendships have been inspired between the religious community and unions; congregations have been presented with opportunities for acting on the social teachings of their faith groups; and union leaders and members have gained a deeper understanding of their faith in action.
For additional questions or concerns, contact Interfaith Worker Justice at 773-728-8400 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.