FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Monday, December 14, 2015
Major Labor Union Representing More than 150,000 in Illinois Calls Duckworth the Choice for Working Families
CHICAGO – Today, the SEIU Illinois State Council announced its endorsement of U.S. Representative Tammy Duckworth for U.S. Senate. With her strong record, Representative Duckworth is the best choice for working families.
“Representative Duckworth is not only a war hero but has a proven record of supporting issues crucial to working families, such as ensuring equal pay for women, expanding access to maternity leave and child care, raising the minimum wage, and passing comprehensive immigration reform,” said Tom Balanoff, SEIU Illinois State Council President. “We look forward to continuing to work with her in fighting for a fair economy that works for everyone.”
“I’m deeply honored to have the support of the SEIU Illinois Council and its 150,000 members across the state,” said Representative Duckworth. “SEIU is an incredibly effective and diverse organization, and we share a commitment to fighting to improve the lives of working families and making our state a fairer and more decent place. While others use their position in Congress to make it easier to ship Illinois jobs overseas or serve Wall Street at the expense of working people, I am proud to stand with the working men and women of SEIU, and I look forward to continuing to work to rebuild our middle class, create jobs and raise wages, and provide a measure of economic and retirement security for hardworking Illinois families.”
“Tammy Duckworth has served honorably in our nation’s military to protect the interests of every American citizen,” said SEIU Healthcare Illinois Indiana Vice President Greg Kelley. “She did not back down then from the challenges of battle on foreign soil, and we know she won’t back down now when it comes to protecting the interests of seniors, people with disabilities, our children and all working families when she is elected to the U.S. Senate.”
“Our next Illinois senator needs to support pro-family policies like paid maternal leave and more inclusive child care,” said Local 1 janitor Ina Davis. “Representative Duckworth’s record is strong on issues that matter to working people like me. I’m proud to support someone who has dedicated so much of her life to protecting and serving the public.”
“Tammy Duckworth’s commitment to home care workers and to women’s healthcare issues has been evident throughout her time in public service,” said SEIU HCII homecare worker Kenya Smith. “As a caregiver of 10 years and a current cancer patient, I am proud to endorse the candidate who has always been a champion for women like me, and that’s Tammy Duckworth.”
Representing more than 150,000 workers, the SEIU Illinois State Council rallies behind candidates who have demonstrated a strong record on issues important to all working families. The SEIU Illinois Council represents workers including security officers, janitors, home care and child care providers, 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 workers, not just corporations and CEOs, benefit from today’s economy.
Washington University adjunct professors on Wednesday night held a candlelight rally to protest what they say are low wages and job insecurity.
More than 300 Washington University adjunct professors are currently bargaining their first contract. The workers in January voted to join Service Employees International Union Local 1.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, December 10th, 2015
CONTACT: Izabela Miltko firstname.lastname@example.org 708-655-9681
Nick Desideri email@example.com 630-779-5510
In the Midst of the Holiday Season…
Big Contractors Need to Stop Acting Like Scrooges, Start Paying Janitors a Living Wage
ST. LOUIS – In the midst of the holiday season, over 100 SEIU Local 1 janitors and allies rallied in front of City Hall for a living wage and a fair contract. The poverty wages janitors are currently paid severely inhibit their ability to provide for their families. 1 in 5 children in St. Louis live in poverty, but big St. Louis contractors have been naughtier than they have been nice this year, offering only nickel and dime raises while janitors and their families struggle just to get by. A higher wage will help janitors raise their families, their communities, and all of St. Louis.
“I’ve worked as a janitor for 15 years, and while the cost of living keeps going up, my wages have stayed low,” Local 1 Janitor Barbara Dace said. “The holidays are supposed to be about giving, but working parents and grandparents can barely pay rent. We’re fighting for our families, because we can’t make ends meet on such low wages.”
While people across the nation are buying gifts for their loved ones, Local 1 janitors are struggling to put food on the table. Juggling bills, food, and medical costs leaves little left over. By standing together and telling their stories, janitors built momentum in their hard-fought campaign for a better contract and a living wage.
Local 1 janitors were joined by Local 1 adjunct faculty. Local 1 adjunct faculty stood in solidarity with janitors in their fight for a better contract to highlight the unity of all working people as they struggle to make ends meet this holiday season.
Local 1 janitors kicked off their campaign for a better three-year contract in October. With 1 in 5 children in St. Louis living in poverty, they’re fighting for the better wages they need to support their families. Thursday’s demonstration illustrated how working people across St. Louis are ready to stand up for a higher wage.
Service Employees International Union Local 1 unites nearly 50,000 workers throughout the Midwest. SEIU janitors, security officers, food service workers, and others are working with community leaders to advocate for the quality services the public deserves and the good jobs our communities need.
The adjuncts are currently collectively bargaining their first union contract.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Dec. 3, 2015
Contact: Izabela Miltko firstname.lastname@example.org 708-655-9681
SEIU Illinois State Council endorses Kim Foxx for State’s Attorney
Major Labor Union Representing More than 150,000 in Illinois Calls Foxx the Choice for Working Families
CHICAGO (December 3, 2015)— The SEIU Illinois State Council today announced its endorsement of Kim Foxx for Cook County State’s Attorney over embattled incumbent Anita Alvarez.
“Anita Alvarez shattered what little faith the public had left in our criminal justice system,” said SEIU Illinois State Council President Tom Balanoff. “There is an urgent need for reform, not only in our criminal justice system, but across all levels of society. As communities of color are being victimized, Kim Foxx is our choice to bring the transformative change we need to keep our neighborhoods safe, and to restore the public’s trust in the State’s Attorney’s office.”
“Anita Alvarez has become a national symbol of the failed policies of our criminal justice system. Kim Foxx will restore trust and integrity to that office and will listen.” said SEIU HCII Executive Vice President Greg Kelley.
Foxx, a veteran prosecutor and former Chief of Staff to Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, thanked the SEIU Illinois State Council for their support.
“I am humbled to have the support of the 150,000 service employees represented by the SEIU Illinois State Council,” said State’s Attorney Candidate Kim Foxx. “I am committed to implementing the top-to-bottom reform our criminal justice system our communities so urgently need, and I look forward to working hand in hand with SEIU and other allies in the labor movement to make that change happen.”
Representing more than 150,000 workers, the SEIU Illinois Council rallies behind candidates who have demonstrated a strong record on issues important to all working families. The SEIU Illinois State Council is dedicated to achieving economic justice for all workers; part of that fight is recognizing that no one leads a single-issue life; social and racial justice are crucial in improving the lives of our members and achieving economic fairness in our country.
The SEIU Council represents workers 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 workers, not just corporations and CEOs, benefit from today’s economy.
Fourteen out of 160 O’Hare security officers employed by Universal Security staged the one-day “unfair labor practice” strike to protest against alleged retaliation by their employer for speaking out about work conditions and organizing.
“These workers are the people who work hard to keep our passengers safe, but they work in a hostile environment each and every day and are constantly under the threat of losing their jobs,” said Genie Kastrup, vice president and chief of staff with SEIU* Local 1.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Nov. 17, 2015
Contact: Izabela Miltko email@example.com 708-655-9681
SEIU endorses Hillary Clinton for president
SEIU Illinois State Council members: Clinton supports our movement to build a better future for working families
CHICAGO, IL—After members conducted a rigorous endorsement process for the past several months, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) today endorsed Hillary Clinton for president, calling her a leader who will stand up for the working moms and dads building a movement to secure a better future for their families.
“When people are united, America is strong, and Hillary understands that,” said SEIU Local 1 janitor Sherri Jordan. “Hillary grew up in the middle class right here in Illinois, so she’ll fight hard for working people like me. I’m voting for Hillary Clinton in 2016 because I know she has my back.”
“The members of the SEIU Illinois State Council look forward to working with Secretary Hillary Clinton to champion the needs of working families by restoring balance, reviving neighborhoods and building an economy that works for everyone, not just the wealthy few,” SEIU Illinois State Council President Tom Balanoff said. “Clinton is a leader on issues that SEIU members care about and together we will continue to build a strong movement that will benefit the hardest workers of our country.”
“As a mother of three, I was impressed with the way Mrs. Clinton related to other working mothers and the fact that she is committed to raising the issue of safe and affordable child care to a national platform,” said Lakesia Collins, a nursing home worker who attended a Chicago roundtable discussion on affordable childcare with Clinton in May. “I’m supporting Hillary for President because she shows genuine concern for the real life experiences and challenges that I have to navigate.”
“We applaud Secretary Clinton’s commitment to expanding childcare and home healthcare with organizing rights for workers, raising wages for low-wage workers and implementing common sense immigration reform,” SEIU Healthcare Illinois & Indiana President Keith Kelleher said. “Our members will continue to build the movement and work with Secretary Clinton as she seeks to address these and other issues important to working families. We need a leader in Washington who makes these concerns a priority in our country.”
SEIU’s national months-long member engagement process included a 1,200-member conference in March, three national tele-town hall meetings in which more than 80,000 members participated, three national member polls from the fall of 2014 through the fall of 2015 and more than 200 local executive board debates and discussions with thousands of local union officers and elected member-leaders.
Hillary Clinton will fight to raise wages and has stood up for the rights of workers to join together in a union. She has spoken out in support of the Fight for $15 movement: on the movement’s April 15 national day of action, during the New York wage board fight that resulted in $15 for all fast food workers in the state, for the $15 victories in Los Angeles city and county and again just last week, on Nov. 10, during the biggest day of action yet.
“As cleaners, we roll up our sleeves every day and get the job done without complaint. When Hillary Clinton is president, she will do the same. She will fight tirelessly for working families. I like that she is not running to prove a point, she is running to make our country better,” said Pam Johnston, a cleaner, member of 32BJ SEIU in Pittsburgh and executive board member.
Once elected, Hillary Clinton will have the opportunity to address the epidemic of low wages and poor training standards for our nation’s airport workers, who keep travelers safe and airports clean. “Airport jobs should be good jobs — and together, we can make sure they are,” she wrote to airport workers gathered at a national convention last month in Washington.
Clinton has recognized the value of care work in our nation, particularly the home care providers and child care teachers who help educate our future generations and allow our seniors and those with disabilities to live with dignity at home. In many places, these workers earn poverty wages with no sick or vacation time and few if any benefits. “One of the things I’m trying to do in this campaign is put raising wages at the center,” Clinton said at an August roundtable meeting in Los Angeles with SEIU home care providers. “I think your skills deserve a lot more pay and benefits than what’s currently being made available to you.”
“Hillary Clinton understands that child care teachers need living wages and that the care has to be affordable for people,” said Marites McLean, a child care provider and member of SEIU Local 509 in Massachusetts. “She gets it and she’s going to do something about it.”
Clinton is also a leader on the core issues SEIU members care about in this election, including fighting for commonsense immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship, standing up for voting rights and criminal justice reform that prioritizes ending mass incarceration and supporting and strengthening the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Clinton’s commitment to quality, affordable healthcare goes back decades to her courageous efforts in 1994 to ensure coverage for all. SEIU members know she will fight hard to strengthen the ACA so we never go backward.
“Hillary Clinton has proven she will fight, deliver and win for working families,” said SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry. “SEIU members and working families across America are part of a growing movement to build a better future for their families, and Hillary Clinton will support and stand with them. This movement for economic, racial, immigrant and social justice is poised to turn out to vote in November with their families and communities and keep pushing elected officials to deliver once in office.”
SEIU’s 2 million members will join hands with community partners in a broad movement for economic, social, immigrant and racial justice. Along with the64 million people who work at jobs paying poverty-level wages, they will be a powerful force during the 2016 elections. Hundreds of thousands of face-to-face and door-to-door contacts, millions of phone calls, robust digital engagement and other activities to get out the vote will counteract the efforts of billionaires and corporations to elect leaders who would answer only to the wealthy few.
The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) unites 2 million diverse members in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. SEIU members working in the healthcare industry, in the public sector and in property services believe in the power of joining together on the job to win higher wages and benefits and to create better communities while fighting for a more just society and an economy that works for all of us, not just corporations and the wealthy.