September is quite a month in the world of Workforce Development. Not only does it begin with a holiday celebrating the working individual, but it has also been designated by the National Association of Workforce Boards (NAWB) as Workforce Development Month.
There is no debate as to why, on the first Monday in September, the nation pays tribute to the social and economic achievements of American workers. The message of Labor Day has been the same since it began, informally in 1882, and officially as a federal holiday in 1894: the great American worker is what makes America great!
However, there is an ongoing debate about who first proposed the holiday. All agree it was Mr. McGuire, but which one is the real question (no, it wasn’t Jerry).
In 1882, Matthew Maguire, a machinist from New Jersey, is said to have first proposed the holiday while serving as secretary of the Central Labor Union of New York. Others argue it was first proposed by Peter McGuire, a carpenter from New York and member of the American Federation of Labor, also in 1882, after attending an annual labor festival in Toronto. In the end it doesn’t matter. Both were hard-working men who well represented what the holiday was all about.
Workforce Development Month
This designation is intended to honor all those workforce professionals who play such a vital role in our nation’s economic recovery efforts. Additionally, NAWB hopes this call for recognition will strike a chord with businesses, educational agencies, economic development organizations, labor unions, customers and even political leadership, all of whom benefit from workforce development services across the country. Here’s to you all!
For more information about Workforce Development Month, read this.