Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong urged Singaporeans to honour the pioneer generation of unionists by building upon their achievements, in his May Day message on Wednesday.
He paid tribute to the unionists who fought the Communists and worked with the Government to improve labour relations through the country's turbulent early years.
Their courage allowed a young nation to build its economy and deliver better lives for the people, he said, stressing that the generation overcame "long odds".
"Let us honour them by upholding their spirit, building on their achievements and creating an even better Singapore for our children," he said.
To do so, everyone, from Government to employers to workers, must play their part.
In his message, he spelt out how the Government is growing the economy and creating jobs.
It is giving generous incentives to help firms raise productivity and create opportunities for growth overseas. Training has also been given a boost, said Mr Lee, with two new Continuing Education and Training centres at Jurong East and Paya Lebar.
But he reminded workers and bosses to chip in too.
"Workers must make the effort to train and upgrade themselves," he said, adding: "Employers must invest in workers, develop their skills, and make full use of their talents."
"Only then will the Government's programmes bear fruit."