NBC12 Viewpoint: Labor Day and unemployment

By Don Richards, NBC12 Regional Vice President and General Manager

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - After a blistering hot summer, Labor Day is finally here.

Of course, Labor Day is far more than one day set aside for parades and speeches. For most it is mainly a three-day retail and social event that marks the symbolic end of summer. And of course it's the kickoff of the football season.

Well, this Labor Day weekend finds most Americans in the labor force are still employed. But there is a staggering number of people out of work.

An unemployment rate of nearly 10 percent means that this Monday will be just another day out of work for too many people.

There are new positive signs that our economy is slowly getting back on its feet. But employment growth is not one of them.

So what can we do? If you can, consider making a donation to one of our local non-profits helping the unemployed find jobs or learn new skills. Goodwill is an example of a local non-profit providing such training.

And the other thing you can do is enjoy your well deserved break. Light up the grill, watch some football, shop a sale, buy school supplies or head to your favorite getaway spot.

Labor Day weekend activities are relaxing and they also help put people back to work.