Monday (Sept. 2) is Labor Day – the day set aside in both the U.S. and Canada to celebrate workers. It has its roots in the labor union movement. The first Labor Day parade was Sept. 5, 1882 in New York City, organized by the Central Labor Union. Some 10,000 workers paraded around Union Square.
The idea spread across the county and many state legislatures passed bills making it a legal holiday. In 1894, Congress enacted legislation making the first Monday of September the official Labor Day.
While the legislation was signed by President Grover Cleveland, history notes that he signed it to help mitigate the criticism he was getting for sending troops to break up a strike, resulting in 13 dead strikers and more than 50 wounded.
Over time Labor Day parades in the U.S. and big celebrations have given way to the “just-another day-off” mentality and the last weekend of summer.
In Juneau, the Central Labor Council sponsors a community Labor Day picnic at Sandy Beach from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
- Legislators are considering a special audit of the Alaska Mental Health Trust and how the trustees are investing its money.
- Cynthia Franklin, who helped guide Alaska's work in setting up the state's legal marijuana industry, is resigning as director of the Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office.
- An online controversy spread to the halls of city government in Anchorage on Tuesday, with accusations flying about fake news, liberal media bias and a militant Islamic training camp in Wasilla that does not exist.
- Former Sen. John Glenn has died at 95. After a career as a Marine pilot, Glenn was chosen as an astronaut. He was the third American in space.