This coming Monday is Labor Day in the United States. The Department of Labor states that, Labor Day is "dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers“ and is "a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.”
According to the History Channel, Labor Day “originated during one of American labor history's most dismal chapters,” which refers to the late 1800's when “the average American worked 12-hour days and seven-day weeks in order to eke out a basic living.” In addition to children often working in various jobs for little money, "[p]eople of all ages, particularly the very poor and recent immigrants, often faced extremely unsafe working conditions, with insufficient access to fresh air, sanitary facilities and breaks." It was during this era that labor unions began to form. The unions protested against the hazardous working conditions that people were subjected to and negotiated for better pay.
The very first time Labor Day was celebrated, according to the Department of Labor, was in New York City on September 5, 1882. It was planned by the Central Labor Union who continued the tradition the following year, again celebrating on September 5th. The first Monday in September was picked as the official date in 1884, and the “Central Labor Union urged similar organizations in other cities to follow the example of New York and celebrate a ‘workingmen's holiday' on that date.” Pretty soon, the idea caught on. The very first state to recognize Labor Day as a holiday was Oregon, in 1887. As the years progressed many other states followed suit, and in 1894 it officially became a federal holiday.
In addition to celebrating workers, according to the History Channel, “Labor Day also symbolizes the end of summer for many Americans, and is celebrated with parties, parades and athletic events.” Likewise, many people use the three day weekend to catch up on sleep, do various recreational activities, or go on a short trip.
Increased DUI Enforcement
Because consuming alcohol or marijuana is a common occurrence over the holiday, there is often an increase in DUI patrols during Labor Day weekend and this year is no different. The Yakima Herald reported that “[t]he Washington State Patrol and local law-enforcement agencies are stepping up patrols for intoxicated drivers between Friday and Labor Day.” This increase is part of the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign that started on August 18th.
If you are planning to go out this weekend and have any alcoholic beverages or use marijuana, it is a good idea to make travel arrangements ahead of time, such as designating a driver or using a ride-sharing service. However, if you do find yourself under arrest for driving under the influence, please do not hesitate to contact the Law Offices of Steve Karimi. Steve Karimi is an experienced and knowledgeable attorney who has represented clients accused of DUI for many years. You can reach his office by calling 206-621-8777 or by filling out an online contact form. Have a safe holiday weekend!