A slogan of the early labor movement, in their quest for an eight hour working day. In the same spirit as the Bread and Roses movement (which was about achieving a living wage), the idea is that your work should be only part of your life, and if you're working thirteen or fourteen hour days (not uncommon before the labor movement) you don't have time to sleep, raise your children, date, or do many of the things that should make life worth living.

While the eight hour working day was eventually incorporated into most labor laws in the United States, it has been gradually eroded over the years, especially for unorganized and/or salaried employees.

You can also thank this movement for Saturdays.

Unions: the people who brought you the weekend

It is worth noting that people literally fought, bled, suffered, starved and died to win an eight hour work day.
Just because we aren't all working in coal mines or canneries doesn't make our work any less valuable. Somehow the idea that we owe the company a little bit more of our free time each day as a condition of employment has has become acceptable.

Just because you are a salaried employee as opposed to an hourly wage employee in the United States doesn't mean you aren't entitled to overtime. Each time someone works a 50 hour week to stay ahead of the guy working a 48 hour week, it's just like someone who would work for $3.75 an hour to stay ahead of the guy who would work for $4.00 an hour. I can already feel my "rant-gland" starting to ooze, so maybe this is enough for now...

Log in or register to write something here or to contact authors.