What You Don’t Know about Labor Day [Video]

Posted August 30, 2013 in Government Video Your Job & The Law by


Did you know the first Labor Day was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882 in New York City, as a creation of the labor movement? ‘

In the video, Editor-in-Chief of Lawyers.com Larry Bodine reminds us that it’s a good day to remember how the law has grown since then to protect 140 million people in today’s work force.

Larry Bodine

During the Industrial Revolution, men, women and children worked up to 16 hour days, seven days a week in dangerous conditions – and they had virtually no legal rights. The word “weekend” did not even exist until the 1870s. So the labor movement successfully demanded laws to protect workers.

Today, the U.S. Department of Labor guarantees standards for wages and overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act. It also sets workplace safety guidelines with the Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA) Act.

Three other laws also protect American workers:

1.    The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission – the EEOC – filed nearly 100,000 job bias charges last year. The agency protects against workplace discrimination based on retaliation, race, sex and other kinds of discrimination.

2.    The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows eligible employees to take up to one year off from work to care for a newborn child or a member of the family who is sick. 13% of all workers used the law in the last 12 months.

3.    The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) ensures the integrity of 700,000 retirement plans and more than 2 million health plans. The law requires employers to report the status of the plans so that they are there for workers when they retire or become ill.

If you feel that you have been exploited or abused at work, talk to an employment lawyer about your rights. The labor laws exist to protect the rights of people who come to work, each day, building America.

We honor and celebrate with you this Labor Day.

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