Candidates Will Fight for the Working Families of Illinois
CHICAGO – On behalf of the 150,000 janitors, security officers, health care and home care workers, public employees and more, the SEIU Illinois State Council proudly supported its endorsed candidates both financially and with an enthusiastic grassroots effort. Hundreds of SEIU members knocked on more than 40,000 doors and made thousands of calls. More than 200,000 pieces of literature were sent to communicate with voters and nearly $500,000 was donated in direct contributions to the endorsed candidates. In addition, thousands of text messages and live calls were used to turn out SEIU members for the endorsed candidates.
The following statement is from SEIU Illinois State Council President Tom Balanoff:
“The SEIU Illinois State Council is proud to stand with and congratulate our winning endorsed candidates in Tuesday’s Democratic primary election.
“These candidates will best represent the interests and values of working families in our great state by fighting for a $15 minimum wage, higher wages for all and affordable health care.
“We look forward to continuing our partnership with them in the fight for economic, immigrant, racial and environmental justice.”
The victorious SEIU-endorsed candidates include:
Jesus “Chuy” Garcia for Illinois 4th Congressional District
Kwame Raoul for Illinois Attorney General
Toni Preckwinkle for Cook County Board President
Karen Yarbrough for Cook County Clerk
Cook County Board of Commissioners
Brandon Johnson, 1st District
Dennis Deer, 2nd District
Bill Lowry, 3rd District
Stanley Moore, 4th District
Deborah Sims, 5th District
Donna Miller, 6th District
Luis Arroyo Jr., 8th District
Bridget Degnen, 12th District
Larry Suffredin, 13th District
Ram Villivalam, 8th District
Iris Martinez, 20th District
Ann Gillespie, 27th District
Theresa Mah, 2nd District
Delia Ramirez, 4th District
Lamont Robinson Jr., 5th District
Sonya Harper, 6th District
Kelly Cassidy, 14th District
Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz, 17th District
Robert Martwick, 19th District
Lisa Hernandez, 24th District
Justin Slaughter, 27th District
Robert “Bob” Rita, 28th District
Thaddeus Jones, 29th District
William “Will” Davis, 30th District
Mary Flowers, 31st District
Lance Yednock, 76th District
Natalie Manley, 98th District
Marsha Griffin, 115th District
CHICAGO — On Wednesday, March 21, Chicago Public School (CPS) custodians, holding mops and bottles of iconic cleaning product Fabuloso, rallied for fabulous and clean schools outside Wednesday’s CPS Board meeting. Custodians both inside and outside the board meeting urged CPS to support the 2,000 hardworking custodians who are currently in contract negotiations with contractors Aramark, RJB, Gerelex and more.
“Too many CPS custodians do not receive the proper staffing or supplies we need to keep schools healthy and clean for students and teachers,” said SEIU Local 1 Custodian Maxine Gladney. “It’s time contractors start valuing our work and offering us the resources we need to do our jobs.”
Without guarantees of proper staffing levels or supplies, many CPS custodians struggle to keep schools as clean and healthy as possible. Many custodians buy supplies like Fabuloso with money out of their own pockets because they are deeply dedicated to their schools and students. Custodians are also fighting for a dignified wage that reflects the valuable work they do as well as more sick days to prevent illness from spreading in schools.
These issues can be addressed with a strong new contract that guarantees proper staffing, supplies, sick days and a dignified wage for CPS custodians. The current contract for custodians expires on April 8. Custodians urged the CPS Board to stand with them as they bargain with contractors for cleaner schools and a better future for their communities.
Degnen is a progressive champion who will fight for Cook County’s working families
“Today, voters across Cook County’s 12th District elected Bridget Degnen to represent them full-time on the Cook County Board in 2019.
“The janitors, home care and health care providers, adjunct faculty, security officers and doorstaff of SEIU are proud to stand with a woman who will be a strong voice for Cook County’s working families.
“Degnen is a champion for women, the LGBTQ community, immigrants, workers and the environment. She will fight for a $15 minimum wage and to expand affordable healthcare access.
“Degnen’s election represents a new direction for the 12th District and a significant win for the working people of Cook County. We look forward to working alongside Degnen to stand up for public services and policies that put working people ahead of corporate special interests.”
Garcia will be a strong leader in Congress for the working families of Illinois
“The SEIU Illinois State Council—which represents 150,000 janitors, home and health care workers, higher education faculty, security officers, doorstaff, public employees and others— congratulates Jesus ‘Chuy’ Garcia on his victory in Illinois’ 4th Congressional District.
“Garcia is the progressive champion we need in Congress to stand up for all Americans and against the Trump Administration’s dangerous attacks on workers, women, the LGBTQ community, immigrants and the environment.
“From his commitment to raising the minimum wage to $15 to expanding affordable healthcare access and protecting immigrant families, Garcia will be a strong ally in Congress for the working families of Illinois. We look forward to working alongside him on these critical issues.”
On International Women’s Day, hundreds of Local 1 women janitors and custodians who clean our Chicagoland offices, schools and public buildings rallied with their allies as #WomenRise for good jobs and a strong new contract!
Local 1’s women members kicked off their contract campaign on behalf of 12,000 Chicago-area janitors, 70 percent of whom are women.
It was a great event and an empowering day! Women rise! ¡Mujeres guerreras! Silne kobiety!
Check out some of the fantastic media coverage from the event:
ST. LOUIS – The following is a statement from Dominique Curry, a Centaur Building Services janitor at Express Scripts, in response to the Fortune 500 company’s fourth quarter and full year results released today. While Express Scripts pulled in $4.5 billion in 2017, the contracted janitors who clean its facilities are struggling to make ends meet:
“Express Scripts is a Fortune 500 healthcare company, but the janitors like me who work hard to clean it every day are barely scraping by on low wages and bare-bones health coverage.
“Express Scripts has received millions of dollars in taxpayer incentives and raked in billions in 2017. Meanwhile, we’re struggling just to put food on the table for our kids and to pay the bills.
“It’s time Express Scripts follow through on its commitment to the working people of North St. Louis County by creating good jobs that give us the opportunity to support our families. Doing so will raise standards for all working people and make our region better for everyone.”
In addition to Chicago, Local 1 members from Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Detroit, Milwaukee, Toledo and St. Louis were in the house!
Contracts expire this year for more than 14,500 Local 1 janitors. At the convention hall, the energy was high as the member leaders geared up to fight for strong new contracts that include good raises and better benefits, while also protecting our progress.
We agreed that, this year, we have our best opportunity yet to win better wages and benefits. Because that’s what unites us: hope in a better future for working people and our families.
When one city wins, we ALL win! Together, #WeRise for the good union jobs our communities need to thrive!
Worker leaders at Chicago O’Hare International Airport continue to reaffirm their commitment to a better future with SEIU Local 1. At a recent convention, the worker leaders expressed excitement and optimism for their journey ahead in the fight for economic justice at Chicago’s airports!
Check out video from the convention:
Progressive labor union represents more than 150,000 janitors, security officers, health care and home care workers, public employees and more throughout Illinois, including more than 10,000 in Illinois’ 3rd Congressional District.
CHICAGO – Today, the SEIU Illinois State Council announced its endorsement of Marie Newman in the state’s March 20 Democratic primary. Newman is running to unseat longtime incumbent Congressman Dan Lipinski in Illinois’ 3rd Congressional District.
While Illinois working families are struggling to make ends meet, Congressman Lipinski told the Chicago Sun-Times editorial board that he did not support raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. His refusal to stand with working families for a higher minimum wage, along with his votes against the Affordable Care Act, legal protections for immigrant families and a woman’s right to choose shows how clearly out of step Congressman Lipinski is with the progressive values of his constituents. Unlike Lipinski, Newman will be a progressive champion in Washington for the 3rd District’s working families by fighting for a $15 minimum wage, advocating for immigrant families, protecting a woman’s right to choose and expanding access to affordable health care.
“Congressman Lipinski’s refusal to support a $15 minimum wage for working people shows how deeply out of touch he is with the working families of his district,” said SEIU Illinois State Council President Tom Balanoff. “Whether it’s voting against Obamacare or voting for restrictions on a woman’s right to choose, it is clear Congressman Lipinski does not share the progressive values of his constituents. SEIU is proud to join a long list of progressive leaders and organizations in endorsing Marie Newman for Congress.”
“Every day, our members get up to do very hard work to deliver quality health care and child care services to those who depend on us. Unfortunately, not enough of our elected officials in Washington are doing what’s necessary to help these workers improve their lives,” said SEIU Healthcare Illinois Indiana President Greg Kelley. “I’m standing here today to support Marie Newman for the 3rd District Congressional seat for the state of Illinois precisely because we need someone to represent us in Washington who will not quiver or equivocate on the issues that are so important to working families.”
“When you work hard and play by the rules, you deserve a shot at the American Dream. That is a value I share with the 10,000 SEIU members who are the very backbone of our community here in the Third district. For far too long, Dan Lipinski has turned a blind eye to hardworking Illinois families ignoring his responsibility to fight to give them a chance,” said Marie Newman. “I will never turn my back on our working families, rather, I will fight tirelessly to make sure workers can survive on a livable wage, starting at $15 an hour, have access to affordable and quality healthcare and Medicare for all, and can access their earned benefits like Social Security and have respect and dignity in the workplace. I could not be more honored to have the support of SEIU and I look forward to working alongside them as a partner to make sure no matter who you are or where you come from if you work hard you will have a fighting chance at success.”
The SEIU Illinois State Council represents more than 150,000 working people, including home care and child care providers, security officers, janitors, as well as public employees, medical professionals, first responders and social service workers. SEIU members are winning better wages, health care, and more secure jobs, while ensuring that working people, not just the wealthy and well-connected, benefit from today’s economy.
Last week, 20 Local 1 building engineers, representing six different management companies, were the first group to graduate from the one-year Certified Residential Engineers training program! The training program, a partnership between labor and management, is aimed at improving the lives of Local 1 members and the residents they serve in their buildings. Congrats CRE graduates!
Check out video from the event and hear from the graduates: