September 10, 2009 – President Barack Obama chose the AFL-CIO Labor Day Picnic in Cincinnati, OH, to deliver remarks that included an eloquent reminder about the contributions of the American Labor Movement: “So let us never forget: much of what we take for granted – the 40-hour work week, the minimum wage, health insurance, paid leave, pensions, Social Security, Medicare – they all bear the union label. . . . So even if you’re not a union member, every American owes something to America’s labor movement,” said Obama. “It was the American worker – union men and women – who returned from World War II to make our economy the envy of the world. It was labor that helped build the largest middle class in history. So even if you’re not a union member, every American owes something to America’s labor movement…”
Several thousand union members and their families cheered the president’s remarks at the Labor Day event, which was hosted by the IAM’s own Doug Sizemore, who also serves as the Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the Cincinnati AFL-CIO. Sizemore introduced AFL-CIO retiring president, John Sweeney, AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Richard Trumka and other labor leaders from Ohio, including Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown.