September 5 ,2016 is the first Monday in September, therefore making it Labor Day in the United States. Honoring all the men and women who are part of unions who work hard, this day is in appreciation of their work. In the 1979 film Norma Rae, we are introduced to a small town factory worker who works to create a union after there are deadly accidents.
Norma Rae Webster is a minimum wage cotton mill worker who finds that her job is taking a toll on her health. One day her she hears a speech by a union leader causing her to work on unionizing her cotton mill. The conditions that she works in are poor, however they are being ignored. Her choice to unionize causes friction between her and her husband and at work. However, Norma won’t back down causing her to be sent to jail. However, she is bailed out by Reuben, the union leader she heard earlier. After meeting with Reuben, her husband and children she is able to lead a vote with her fellow workers. Together they decide to join a union making it so they are able to have proper working conditions that won’t lead to sickness and life endangerment. In the end, Norma has gone above and beyond to ensure her and her coworkers are able to be safe as she and Reuben part ways.
Labor Day is a holiday of rest for many people. However, it is a day to honor all of those who work in unions so they can see their work is not forgotten. In the 1979 film Norma Rae, we are introduced to the concept of a young woman who stood up for safe conditions while making a difference in those around her.