An encouraging boo to all stores that are closed on Thanksgiving but do not have holiday pay. And too many workers will still be called to jobs that do not really need to be done every day.
However, some jobs must be worked 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, without regard to public holidays. Nurses. Doctor. Ambulance staff and emergency nurses. Firefighters. This year, many of these workers have spent more than a year and a half working through a pandemic that has made their jobs more difficult, more dangerous, more relentless. More than 3,600 healthcare staff died of covid-19 in the first year of the pandemic, and although vaccines have done much to protect them from serious illness and death in the last eight months or so, they have still been forced to preside over huge amounts of suffering and death, most can be prevented.
So on this day of thanksgiving, remember to thank the people who have taken us so far, who have put their health and lives at risk to take care of our sick or make sure there is food on the shelves. But remember how much of that risk and the brutal work that should not have been necessary – or should have been done in the context of employers and a society that valued workers and work higher.