Labor Day: Celebrating workers, union support hits 71% approval

Posted Aug. 29, 2022 by

When union members come together on Labor Day, it's about more than barbecues and parades. It's about showing the power that union members have to make a difference on the job. And it displays the real impact that unions, public employees and the working class have (and have had) on our nation.

Union members, working together across the labor movement, won many important victories for working people last year like securing infrastructure funding, lobbying for student loan forgiveness for working families, fighting to preserve pensions, helping striking workers secure better contracts and unleashing a wave of union organizing. And, it is union workers, especially public employees, who keep our country moving forward through a global pandemic. And Americans are taking notice. In the annual Labor Day Gallup poll released yesterday, union support has hit a 57-year high, with 71 percent approving of labor unions.

But there’s still so much we can do together. Passing pro-worker laws will strengthen us at the bargaining table so we can care for ourselves and our families. And it will take each and every union member talking to one another about the issues that matter to advance the shared worker agenda. This also means not getting distracted by that which does not move us forward. Want to contribute to building that shared agenda and improve the lives of working people? The AFL-CIO is looking for union member feedback through its “What do you care about?” survey. You can fill out that survey HERE.

OCSEA District 2 to honor members at Great american Ball Park event

For OCSEA activists like Donald Davison, a Corrections Officer, OCSEA Board of Directors member and President of OCSEA District 2, Labor Day is about celebrating essential workers and reminding the membership about the power of being union. Officer Davison recently worked with his OCSEA district leaders to secure 200 giveaway tickets for OCSEA members to the Labor Day Union Day at the Great American Ball Park. The Cincinnati Reds celebration of labor is sponsored by the Cincinnati AFL-CIO and is being held for the first time at the Great American Ball Park after years at Coney Island.

"This Sunday, 200 District 2 members and their families will come together in celebration of public service employees. Our solidarity was tested throughout the pandemic, but our membership stayed strong and made our State work. This Labor Day celebration is just one small way we can honor our sacrifices and show we're in this together," said Donald.

"We are looking forward to seeing everyone. It will be the perfect way to show our OCSEA union solidarity and remind our community of what public union members do to keep us going," said Donald.

Mansfield labor to host family-friendly Labor Day event

OCSEA activists Alan Koser, Bill Homer, Bill Knipp and Alex Witte are all members of their local Mid-Ohio Area Labor Council and are involved in this year’s upcoming Mansfield Labor Day event. The Labor Council, which is made up of activists from many different unions, will be hosting a Labor Day parade as well as a Labor Day Festival after the march.

At the festival, union families and their kids will be able to ride the famous Richland County Carousel and get lunch for free! A face painter and a balloon artist will also be brought in, courtesy of OCSEA Chapter 7000. “Our focus has always been on union members and their whole families,” said Alan, who is the treasurer of the chapter. “That’s why we made this a family-friendly event.”

The Mansfield Labor Day parade takes place on Monday, Sept. 5 at 10 a.m., with the festival going from 11 a.m-1 p.m. Mansfield-area unions involved in the planning and execution include the Steelworkers, Local Laborers 1216, IBEW 688, the Bricklayers, the Carpenters, the United Food and Commercial Workers as well as OCSEA Chapters 7000, 7010 and 7020 and 7021.

“This is what labor unions do. We try to give back to the communities that we live in. Same with our charity work. That’s what unions are all about,” said Alan.