Over the last few years, the elevators within the Department of Labor’s Frances Perkins Building in Washington, D.C. have become more than a way to travel between floors. In a space better known for awkward silence and passing pleasantries, our “elevator posters” like the one above are a valuable way to share information with the thousands of employees and guests that come and go each day.
These posters help remember history, shine a light on the contributions of employees, and celebrate accomplishments. But more than that, they help spark a conversation about the impact and importance of our work.
Riding the elevator to my office this morning, I saw the poster celebrating the start of “Sunshine Week,” the importance of open government, and freedom of information. I was struck by one particular line of a James Madison quote featured on the poster — “knowledge will forever govern ignorance.” When it comes to our mission of protecting the health and safety of workers and preparing the workforce for growing industries, this is especially true. Connecting people with the information they need is a fundamental element of what we do each day.
Whether it’s publishing our enforcement actions online in a searchable database, providing more user-friendly online career tools, or hosting Web chats on our budget priorities, we’re constantly working to provide better information and to engage the public in our work. Increased transparency helps both of us make informed decisions, but it also promotes greater accountability.