Dwight D. Eisenhower photo

Statement by the President: Labor Day.

September 07, 1959

ON THIS Labor Day, Americans are firm in their dedication to the ideals of freedom, equal opportunity, and a just reward for their toil.

One cannot look back over past Labor Days without a compelling awareness of the broad and constant improvement in the condition of our people, in the real wages they receive, and in the benefits they enjoy. American labor has advanced continuously to new heights of accomplishment.

The rise in our level of living--the social and economic progress of American working men and women--gives promise of continuing achievement. My reasons for this confidence are threefold:

First, we have a political system based on a deep respect for eternal principles; recognizing the worth of individual initiative; and guarding the fruits of individual endeavor. Through this system we seek to release the energies and skills of our people for the benefit of all, without restricting opportunity to a chosen few.

Secondly, we recognize and protect the rights of employees to organize together and to bargain with their employers for an equitable share of the wealth they produce.

And finally, as a Nation we desire an honorable and productive peace for our neighbors around the world. We want and we are working toward that day when the creative energies of mankind may be fully employed in mutual advancement rather than in mutual annihilation.

This, for me, is the meaning and hope of Labor Day, 1959. It is a privilege to join my fellow citizens in honoring the success, the status, and the purpose of American working men and women.


Dwight D. Eisenhower, Statement by the President: Labor Day. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/234178

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