Not all employees had Labor Day off on the Palouse

MOSCOW, ID - Every Labor Day, our nation celebrates the social and economic achievements of its workers.

And as the Palouse Reporter for KLEW News, I spoke with some of the hardest workers in Pullman - Moscow area, to find out what motivates them to do what they do. Labor Day is a time to recognize the workers that keep our communities running smoothly. From the people you turn to when you have an emergency.

"I come to work everyday and help people when they're not feeling so well," said Gritman Medical Center Emergency Room Nurse Jill Groseclose. "You know, I don't always see people at their best, so sometimes it's a challenge just keeping people calm and making sure they understand that they're going to be okay."

"Everyday is challenging," said Mosow Police Dept. Operations Division Commander Paul Kwiatkowski. "It can go from some terrible call to someone has a hurt mouse in their backyard that they want an officer to respond to."

To the administrators that make sure the emergency responders are able to serve the public...

"My personal job entails mostly ambulance billing and answering questions dealing with insurance companies," said Pullman Fire Department Administrative Specialist Brenda Davison.

"So, I'm in charge of budgeting, and supplies, and ordering," said Pullman Police Dept. Support Services Manager Peni Reavis. "We work with the prosecutor, with the courts, with the public. And then, the phone will ring 24 hours. So it's a real juggling act."

On the Palouse there are hard working people almost everywhere you look, and you may not even realize it. For example, the University of Idaho's Steam Plant is a 24-hour operation that keeps the campus up and running.

"I operate the main boiler systems here to ensure that we have no catastrophic events, get proper fuel feeds, and we have a constant output of steam going to main campus," said U of I Steam Plant Boiler Operator Luke Austin.

And at Pullman's City Hall, City Supervisor Mark Workman collaborates with department heads to manage the city's depleted financial situation.

"We are accomplishing things, getting things done, making a difference, and I think those are the things that motivate our employees, and motivate me as well," said Workman.

KLEW News spoke to workers with a wide range of stressful responsibilities, but they all have one thing in common.

"Actually, I love the job due to the fact, you know, the camaraderie here is wonderful," said Austin. "I love working with the people."

"They're hard workers," said Kwiatkowski. "They're out on the streets doing what we do best."

"Good organization, good support, great bunch of people," said Workman.

"We have a great team of people and I work for a wonderful boss," said Davison.

"It's a family, very much," said Groseclose.

"I'm proud when I say, 'I work for the Pullman Police Department," said Reavis. "And the people I work with, those are good people.'"

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the holiday always falls on the first Monday in September. However, the first Labor Day was celebrated on September 5, 1882 which was a Tuesday.