Brands Affecting Change: Carhartt's Commitment to the Workforce
4 minute read time
As we prepare for a relaxing, enjoyable Labor Day weekend among friends and family, Carhartt asks us not to forget the true vision and meaning behind the national holiday.
They ask this by pledging to donate all sales on Labor Day, from 7am to 7pm EDT, to SkillsUSA- an organization committed to educating and empowering the next generation of the American labor force.
Carhartt’s “Love of Labor”
Going against the grain, Carhartt was built on a deep rooted gratitude for the everyday worker by creating a product that always has been, and continues to be, customized to their needs and capable of withstanding working alongside them.
Undeniably passionate about the wellbeing of workers everywhere, Carhartt was crafted around the principles of quality, honesty, and hard work. The company was founded in 1889 by Hamilton Carhartt during a time in history when the standard of employee treatment was subpar, and the utilization of child and prison labor were a common practice. His progressive, ethical business model defied widely held beliefs among manufacturers, proving that success does not have to arrive at the expense of workers’ basic human rights.
The company was born in the midst of the labor movement and the creation of labor day, the law for which was officially passed only a few years later. Thus, it might not come as a surprise that Carhartt shares many of the core values Labor Day was founded upon: appreciation and respect for hard working people.
After all, Labor Day, as we must not forget, is a celebration of the contributions and achievements made by the American workforce.
A Brief History of Labor Day
The first Labor Day was celebrated in 1882, on Tuesday, September 5th. It was set in motion by the Central Labor Union and took place in New York City.
In 1885, it was first introduced to the government. Slowly, states began adopting the holiday into their legislature, the first being Oregon. By 1894, more than half of the states had recognized it, and congress passed an act making Labor Day an official national holiday.
SkillsUSA: Making an Impact in The American Workforce
As a sponsor of SkillsUSA, Carhartt is able to express its support for American workers through funding educational and experiential opportunities for children as young as middle school aged up to post-secondary and college students.
Founded in 1965, SkillsUSA is a national non-profit educational organization which has been recognized by the US Department of Education for creating a positive and successful training program centered around employer-driven youth development.
By bringing teachers, students, and industries together, SkillsUSA is able to help educate and prepare the next generation of skilled workers. The organization’s programs emphasize the attainment of personal, technical, and workplace skills and strive to empower its student members to be both leaders and responsible citizens. They achieve this goal by providing opportunities for students on the local, state, and national levels.
Impact by The Numbers:
SkillsUSA Career Essentials: As the organization’s main educational program, the curriculum is centered around job and career preparation through three separate lenses. Students are encouraged to pursue personal growth through engaging with their interests, and they are provided with experiences to build the soft skills desired by employers. In addition, they receive technical training and knowledge about their field of interest, arming them with both confidence and employability.
Chapter Excellence Program: Through this program, SkillsUSA gives awards for achievements made through impactful, student-led projects.
SkillsUSA Championships: For students interested in testing their newly acquired skills, these competitive, industry specific challenges allow students to participate on the local, state, and national level.
Student2Student Mentoring: Nothing brings high school students more pride than to take control of their future and be able to help younger kids do the same. Student2Student Mentoring gives high schooler’s the opportunity to help younger students with career exploration.
CareerSafe: This 10 hour OSHA certification offered by SkillsUSA teaches students about workplace safety, providing them with knowledge, confidence, and a competitive edge through workplace certification.
A Mission to Give Back
While most companies seize Labor Day as an opportunity to profit, offering sales and deals to encourage spending, Carhartt is unique. They genuinely embody the true spirit of Labor Day- celebrating workers- but not through selling to them. Carhartt’s chosen method of celebration is giving back.
- Giving back to the country, desperately in need of a continuous supply of industrious, dedicated citizens prepared to support America and her growth.
- Giving back to hardworking families, who want to see their children carry on a proud legacy of good, honest work.
Carhartt’s generosity doesn’t end with this Labor Day, but it is certainly worth noting their remarkable gesture to the working people of America and the future of our country.
Shop Custom Carhartt Items at Lead Apparel
“Carhartt History.” Carhartt, Carhartt, www.carhartt.com/content/carhartt-history?icid=LINK-about-history.
“History of Labor Day.” U.S. Department of Labor, www.dol.gov/general/laborday/history.
“Our Impact - SkillsUSA: Champions at Work.” SkillsUSA, 13 July 2020, www.skillsusa.org/about/our-impact/.
“Overview of SkillsUSA - SkillsUSA: Champions at Work.” SkillsUSA, 13 July 2020, www.skillsusa.org/about/overview/.