Thousands of New Yorkers celebrated unionized labor Saturday in Midtown at the annual Labor Day Parade. NY1's Erin Clarke filed this report.
Sure, Labor Day has passed and there is a well-known parade on that day—but one parade, held every year on the Saturday after the holiday is meant to celebrate the city's working men and women, unionized or not.
"We are New York City and New York City depends on this labor movement and we built the city. We live in the city. We have all our investment in the city and so it's a great day to show New Yorkers what New York City is really all about," said parade chair George Miranda.
This year, the Labor Day Parade had added significance.
As a push to increase the minimum wage to $15 an hour heats up.
"The current minimum wage of $8.75 an hour just doesn't work," said Governor Andrew Cuomo.
"If we're going to have a city of equality, it has to start with financial equality and we have to make sure that people can pay their rents, put food on the table for their kids," said State Comptroller Scott Stringer.
Thousands of workers, unionized or not, made their way up Fifth Avenue echoing those sentiments.
"We do 12 hour shifts, seven days a week and we're not paid appropriately," said one marcher, Lisa Johnson.
They say in the past, unions have paved the way for change.
"The union movement. It is what has made America great. It created our middle class," said City Council candidate Barry Grodenckik.
"Many of the benefits we have today are a result of the labor movement," said Arieh Lebowitz of Jewish Labor Committee.
They're hopeful it will happen again but say all must remain vigilant to accomplish that goal.