Labour movement brought us prosperity

The labour movement has contributed to health and safety standards in the workplace, shorter work weeks, as well as gaining workers medical and maternity/paternity leave.

People in countries with high labour standards enjoy better quality of life and less stress overall.

When people are paid well for their labour, they are more productive, which increases the bottom line for employers. And they are less stressed, therefore happier, making parenting and life in general, much easier.

Labour Day is just as important as ever. Households are being challenged at every turn. Housing, fuel, food and other costs are on the rise and expendable income levels have not kept up, especially for the under-45 demographic as well as those on fixed pensions.

A living wage is critical (as are working conditions) for healthy families and a healthy community.

When people earn a living wage, our local economies are healthier too, supporting more local small businesses and creating more employment so that our young people can choose to settle in their home

communities if they want to.

Bonus – people who make a living wage pay more taxes, supporting healthcare, infrastructure and other societal costs.

I think we would have a healthier and happier world in general if there was more equality of income in the workforce. The labour movement has been one of the factors that increased people’s standard of

living for decades.

Many of my ancestors were instrumental in the early movement, working here on the Island in the coal mining and logging industries. Lost two second cousins to accidents – one in each of those industries.

We owe so much to these early crusaders, in terms of workers’ safety, benefits and shorter working hours. We must be ever protective of previous gains and strive to improve working and living conditions for all British Columbians going forward.

Happy Labour Day to all, and gratitude to those who have helped make B.C. such a great place to live and grow and raise a family.

Kate Marsh is a councillor for the Municipality of North Cowichan

Just Posted

Island Health dementia video series wins awards

Sharing the Journey: Practical Approaches to Caring for a Loved One With Dementia

Chemistry there, but offence lacking for Fury

Cowichan falls to Vic West 2-0

VIDEO: In time for gift giving: Buddy’s Holly Jolly Christmas show in Cowichan

Ben Klein as Elvis, Cassandra Frie as Brenda Lee join Zachary Stevenson in a great evening of music

LMG stymied in shocking draw

‘One-way traffic’ for 94 minutes but Cowichan can’t score

VIDEO: Octopus, bald eagle battle after bird ‘bites off more than it can chew’ in B.C. waters

B.C. crew films fight between the two feisty animals in Quatsino off north Vancouver Island

Raptors fans show Kawhi the love in his return to Toronto

Leonard receives championship ring, leads new club to win

Process to identify those killed in Gabriola plane crash could take days

Canadian flight museum suggests Alex Bahlsen of Mill Bay died in Tuesday’s crash

One man dead after car crash in Nanaimo

One person died, another was injured in the accident which happened Wednesday on Nanaimo Lakes Road

‘Honest mistake:’ RCMP says B.C. cannabis shop can keep image of infamous Mountie

Sam Steele wearing military, not RCMP uniform in image depicted in Jimmy’s Cannabis window

B.C. conservation officers put down fawn blinded by pellet gun on Vancouver Island

Young deer found near construction site in Hammond Bay area in Nanaimo, B.C.

Laid-off forest workers converge on B.C. legislature

Loggers call for action on strike, provincial stumpage

B.C. guide fined $2K in first conviction under new federal whale protection laws

Scott Babcock found guilty of approaching a North Pacific humpback whale at less than 100 metres

Feds urge Air Canada to fix booking problems as travel season approaches

The airline introduced the new reservation system more than three weeks ago

Most Read