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London and District Labour Council annual Labour Day picnic on Sept. 2. 2019. (Brent Lale/CTV)

Summer has unofficially come to an end. Students are headed back to school after one last Labour Day celebration in the region.

Londoners were taking advantage of the beautiful weather at Thames Park where they were enjoying the free picnic put on by the London and District Labour Council (LDLC).

"We're celebrating labour and the accomplishments of labour," says LDLC president Patti Dalton.

"We're here for the community and workers whether they are union are not."

Families with children were enjoying the BBQ, games and face painting but also soaking in one last day vacation day.

"We thought we'd bring the kids down to get something to eat, and play," says Ron Hodgins.

There was also a chance to get up close with London politicians.

All three of London's New Democrat MPPs were there, as well as London North Centre MP Peter Fragiskatos.

Fragiskatos says it's been a solid year for his government when it comes to labour and their partnership with UNIFOR.

"UNIFOR was working with our government to re-negotiate NAFTA in a way that matched with Canadian interests," says Fragiskatos.

"They were fundamental partner at the table and I think it's important for governments of all stripes to work with organized labour".

London North Centre MPP Terence Kernaghan was mingling with constituents where he heard concerns about affordable housing and the minimum wage.

"Labour is more important than ever," says Kernaghan.

He called out the current conservative government for not raising the minimum wage to $15/hour and not supporting front line workers. As kids head back to school, the former teacher is hoping the new education minister makes what Kernaghan calls "necessary changes".

"We hope this government realizes that packing kids in classrooms isn't going to lead to better education outcomes. Also making the students take four online courses is against the principles of education."

Dalton says unions are heading into collective bargaining in the fall and Premier Doug Ford and his team better be prepared.

"They better respect education workers because we are highly organized, and ready to mobilize," adds Dalton.

"CUPE,OSSTF and ETFO are prepared to defend the quality of our public education system and the kids of education that our students get".