As Labor Day Looms, U.S. Workers Busier Than Ever [Infographic]
With the Labor Day holiday looming, it would seem that many more Americans would find a way to kick back, relax and enjoy the fleeting days of summer.
But we're an industrious bunch, so it may come as little surprise that the vast majority will find themselves busy with some enterprise this weekend, a new survey finds. Those not toiling away at their jobs expect to find ways to keep busy at home, according to the poll, commissioned by Adecco, the world's largest temporary-staffing company.
About 60 percent of the 1,000 adults surveyed said they plan to spend the holiday weekend doing chores such as cleaning the house while 39 percent expect they will be doing yard work.
About 22 percent of Americans will spend at least some part of the weekend working at their regular jobs, including firemen, police officers and service workers, such as restaurant servers and cooks, toll booth collectors and retail clerks.
Given the current economic doldrums, the need for those kinds of workers is a positive sign, says Jennie Dede, vice president of recruitment at Adecco Staffing USA.
"The recovery has been slower than many people expected, but it's great to see that companies have the need to staff-up this holiday weekend," Dede tells AOL Jobs.
While the vast majority of Americans will be working in some capacity this weekend, Adecco's findings show that only 9 percent won't be doing anything associated with work. Rather, they'll be busy vacationing, watching TV or just lazing about.
The first Labor Day was celebrated in 1882 in New York City to recognize the sacrifices and efforts of trades workers, before becoming a federal holiday a dozen years later, according to the U.S. Department of Labor website.
Today, most Americans -- 68 percent, according to Adecco's survey -- view the holiday as a sign of the end of summer, although about half recognize that Labor Day is a celebration of workers' rights. Even fewer (46 percent), however, connect the date with the history of worker protection over the years.
Though it may be unfortunate that many Americans don't know the real reasoning behind Labor day, Adecco's Dede says it's not unusual for holidays to lose their historical significance as decades pass.
"Americans are some of the hardest, most productive workers in the world," Dede says. "And it's understandable that they are focusing their energy on spending extra time with friends and family."
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David Schepp has spent more than a dozen years covering business news for the electronic and print media, including Dow Jones Newswires, BBC News, Gannett Co., and most recently at AOL's DailyFinance. Nearly 10 years ago, he started writing a weekly People@Work column, looking in depth at issues facing workers in today's workplace. The syndicated column appeared in newspapers and websites nationwide before it made its debut on DailyFinance in 2010. Schepp now continues that tradition at Aol Jobs, covering the jobs beat and providing readers insight and analysis into the nation's challenging employment scene.
Schepp holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism from Metropolitan State College of Denver.
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