Unsung Heroes of Thanksgiving

Fun Thanksgiving parade. Yummy herb-roasted turkey. Laughter-filled family dinner. Thanksgiving: a day for families to come together to cook, chat, eat, and share in the love of the holiday. As the weather gets colder, you partake in Mom’s delicious stuffing, Aunt Becky’s plump apple pie, and Cousin Tony’s hilarious tale of his latest travels. You’re not even bothered by Uncle Ted’s sharing the details of his colonoscopy.

But do you know who else contributes to delicious meal and cherished memories? Working mostly behind the scenes, federal employees make sure your holiday goes as smoothly as possible.

Who are these unsung heroes behind Thanksgiving? We should be thankful for the men and women who work at these agencies:

United States Department of Agriculture

USDA food inspectors make sure the turkey and other meats on your table are safe for consumption.

Food and Drug Administration

Bread sold at your neighborhood grocer is safe and fresh, thanks to the FDA, which regulates grocery store bakeries and meat operations. They also make sure sliced ham, milk, cheese, and other refrigerated items are stored at the correct temperatures.

Transportation Security Administration

If you fly anywhere for Thanksgiving, TSA officers make sure you arrive safely by preventing dangerous items from getting onto airplanes.

Department of Transportation

Once you board the plane, the FAA guides it safely to its destination.

If you drive, roads and bridges were built and are maintained by the experts at the Federal Highway Administration.

And the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration ensures the safety of the buses and trucks on highway with you.


Even in inclement weather, your vehicle is less likely to skid thanks to safety grooving developed by NASA.

Defense Department

Need a map? Well, be thankful for the Defense Department that developed GPS technology.

Commerce Department

Don’t forget to check the weather before you head out. The National Weather Service provides up-to-date information on weather systems that could interfere with your Thanksgiving arrangements.

Environment Protection Agency

The EPA makes sure that the water you drink is safe and the air you breathe is clean so you can continue to enjoy and create many more memories with your loved ones.

Department of Labor

Employees at your local grocer who stock the shelves and ring up your purchases work in safe conditions set by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Last but not least, your AFGE Family

Thanks to you and your coworkers who join together to be a part of the AFGE family, we have the power to secure better work-life balance. Our collective voice allows us to seek better pay, affordable health insurance, secure retirement, and safe working conditions. We’re thankful for you this Thanksgiving and every day!

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