COPE

The Committee On Political Education (COPE) is part of SEIU Local 509 and serves as our political action fund. Money contributed to COPE goes directly toward electing pro-worker, pro-labor politicians as well as working for or against ballot measures that would affect our union.

Because many of our members are employed by the state, or agencies which receive funding from the state, having supportive politicians in office is important to funding strong and fair contracts. Contributing to COPE is a great way to invest in your future as a union human service worker in Massachusetts.

Because we do not use members' dues to give to political campaigns, COPE is funded by voluntary contributions from our members. As little as $1/week makes a big difference. If you do not currently contribute to COPE, or would like to increase your amount, Click here to request that a COPE card be mailed to you.

COPE Committtee, which decides how funds are distributed, meets on the 1st Wednesday of the month, all Local 509 members are welcome to join and be a part of deciding how we can work together to elect pro-worker politicians, contact Deputy Political Director Calvin Feliciano for more information.

SEIU’s Henry: Trump Dept of Labor nominee Puzder dead wrong for America’s working families

Mary Kay Henry

Mary Kay Henry, SEIU President

WASHINGTON—SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry issued the following statement on President-elect Trump’s intended nomination of Andrew Puzder, chief executive of CKE Restaurants, to be Secretary of Labor:

“With the intended nomination of Andrew Puzder for Secretary of Labor, President-elect Trump has once again shown how out-of-touch he is with what working Americans need. Working families, including those who elected him, issued a mandate for economic change because they are sick and tired of working longer and harder than ever but still struggling to build a better future for their families. Puzder has proven he doesn’t support working people: he opposes raises to the minimum wage, even though every time Americans have been called to vote for raises on the ballot, they always do.

“Throughout his career, Andrew Puzder has shown he does not believe in the dignity of all work and has used his position to line his own pockets at the expense of workers. In 2012, Puzder made $4.4 million, a full 291 times more than the average food worker. He doesn’t support measures that would help families who work hard build a better life, such as the overtime rule, which would put more money in the pockets of millions of workers for the extra work they do. He wants machines to replace workers because robots ‘never take a vacation’ – even though robots can not ever replace the work that people do. He has stood with Republican congressional leaders who want to repeal the Affordable Care Act – even though his underpaid workers and millions of working Americans depend on it for healthcare.

“Working Americans aren’t fooled by the anti-worker Trump-Puzder vision for America. They know it threatens their ability to have a voice and to provide for their families. That is why millions of American workers continue to come together through the Fight for $15 movement to make President-elect Trump and his administration deal with our economic reality. Together, workers in the Fight for $15 movement have made the kind of economic change America is crying out for by paving the way for 20 million people to get a raise. SEIU members will not back down, we will stay in the streets to fight back against anti-worker extremism and we will not stop until all work in valued and every community in America has the opportunity to thrive.”

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Save the Date: Major ‘RaiseUp’ Legislative Announcement November 29!

Through our Raise Up Massachusetts coalition, human service workers and educators have been on the front lines of the fight to tackle income inequality and build an economy that works for everyone. Together, we won an historic increase in the minimum wage, earned sick time benefits for all MA families, and launched a campaign to amend the state constitution to invest in education and transportation by making millionaires pay their fair share.

The November election has demonstrated that our work at the state level in Massachusetts is more important than ever — and we’re ready to make a major legislative announcement regarding the next step in our historic effort.

Join us Tuesday, November 29, at 1:30PM at the Grand Staircase on the 2nd Floor of the Massachusetts State House for this important important announcement.

What: Raise Up Massachusetts Legislative Announcement and Rally
When: Tuesday, November 29th, 2016 at 1:30PM
Where: Grand Staircase, 2nd Floor, Massachusetts State House

On the 29th, working families from across the Commonwealth will come together to rally for a landmark bill we plan to file in the next legislation session. Join Raise Up Massachusetts as we hold our legislators accountable to all workers in the Commonwealth.

Join with hundreds of workers from across Massachusetts as we stand together as one movement for a better Commonwealth.

In Solidarity,

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Susan Tousignant, President

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Vote ‘No On 2’ to Save Our Public Schools

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The election is just a few days away and public school students across Massachusetts need your help!

As you may know, parents and educators are in locked into a fight with out-of-state billionaires who are trying to take over our public education system by passing Question #2 on Tuesday’s ballot. Local 509 is standing with thousands of concerned teachers and parents in asking that you VOTE NO ON QUESTION #2 so we can maintain our public schools and say no to unaccountable charter initiatives.

Pulls show a dead-even campaign on Question 2 with momentum on our side, so every conversation, door knock and phone call makes a big difference! Join Senator Elizabeth Warren, Attorney General Maura Healey, Boston Mayor Marty Walsh and over 200 school committees from across the state in voting NO on Question 2.  

Want to take action in the final days of this campaign? Contact Deputy Political Director Calvin Feliciano to get involved!

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2016 General Election Endorsements

VOTE Nov 8 Feature

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Here’s just a few of our most important legislative priorities:

Increase Funding at the Department of Children and Families
Keep at-risk kids safe from abuse and neglect by supporting the funding increases needed to hire additional DCF social workers to reduce caseloads for front-line social workers and investigators.

Keep Health Insurance Costs  from Increasing for State Workers
Allow state employees to continue to pay the same premium share through the GIC, which potentially saving our families upwards of $2,000 a year in increased health insurance costs.

Increase Access to Early Ed with a Living Wage for Providers
Upwards of 40,000 kids remain on a wait list for affordable child care and early education opportunities in MA. Meanwhile, family child care educators who provide these essential services struggle to make ends meet.  We must continue to fight for appropriate funding to reduce this wait list and support the efforts to increase provider salaries to $15 an hour.

Pass the “Millionaires Tax” to Invest in Transit and Education
To generate the revenue needed to make improvements to our crumbling infrastructure and ensure that every child in the Commonwealth has access to a quality public education from pre-k to college, we must tax millionaires in Massachusetts at a higher rate.

Support Paid Family and Medical Leave
Right now 1.2 million workers in Massachusetts risk losing their jobs if they need to take time off to recover from childbirth or take care of a sick family member with a serious illness. Supporting the passage of Paid Family and Medical Leave in MA could help right this wrong.

Ballot Initiative Endorsement: Vote ‘NO’ on Question 2

SEIU Local 509 is standing with thousands of concerned teachers and parents in asking that you vote ‘no’ on Question 2 to maintain our public schools and block unaccountable charter initiatives.
Click here to learn more about this ballot initiative and its impact on our communities.

State Representative Endorsements

Our Committee on Political Education (COPE) has endorsed the following people for State Representative based on their exemplary record of supporting 85% or more of our legislative priorities.

Full Title District 509 Voting Record
Rep. Denise Provost TWENTY-SEVENTH MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 100 %
Rep. Gerry Cassidy NINTH PLYMOUTH DISTRICT 100 %
Sen. Hank Naughton TWELFTH WORCESTER DISTRICT 100 %
Rep. Jose Tosado NINTH HAMPDEN DISTRICT 100 %
Rep. Josh Cutler SIXTH PLYMOUTH DISTRICT 100 %
Rep. Liz Malia ELEVENTH SUFFOLK DISTRICT 100 %
Rep. Mary Keefe FIFTEENTH WORCESTER DISTRICT 100 %
Rep. Mike Day THIRTY-FIRST MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 100 %
Rep. Tricia Farley-Bouvier THIRD BERKSHIRE DISTRICT 100 %
Rep. Cory Atkins FOURTEENTH MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 96 %
Rep. Jared Parisella SIXTH ESSEX DISTRICT 94 %
Sen. Ken Gordon TWENTY-FIRST MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 92 %
Rep. Jim Cantwell FOURTH PLYMOUTH DISTRICT 91 %
Rep. John Rogers TWELFTH NORFOLK DISTRICT 90 %
Rep. Tom Stanley NINTH MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 90 %
Sen. Evandro Carvalho FIFTH SUFFOLK DISTRICT 88 %
Rep. Linda Dean Campbell FIFTEENTH ESSEX DISTRICT 88 %
Rep. Tom Calter TWELFTH PLYMOUTH DISTRICT 88 %
Rep. Rady Mom EIGHTEENTH MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 86 %
Rep. Danielle Gregoire FOURTH MIDDLESEX DISTRICT *
Aaron Kanzer SECOND BARNSTABLE DISTRICT *
Brian Murray TENTH WORCESTER DISTRICT *
Chynah Tyler SEVENTH SUFFOLK DISTRICT *
Rep. David Viera THIRD BARNSTABLE DISTRICT *
Dylan Fernandes BARNSTABLE, DUKES & NANTUCKET DISTRICT *
Estele Bourges THIRD BRISTOL DISTRICT *
Jack Patrick Lewis SEVENTH MIDDLESEX DISTRICT *
Jen Migliore NINTH ESSEX DISTRICT *
Joan Meschino THIRD PLYMOUTH DISTRICT *
John Mahoney FIRST PLYMOUTH DISTRICT *
Kara Nyman FIFTH PLYMOUTH DISTRICT *
Michael Toole FIRST BRISTOL DISTRICT *
Rep. Moses Dixon SEVENTEENTH WORCESTER DISTRICT *
Rep. Natalie Higgins FOURTH WORCESTER DISTRICT *
Paul Jacques FOURTH BRISTOL DISTRICT *
Rosemary Sandlin THIRD HAMPDEN DISTRICT *
Sara Hewins SECOND PLYMOUTH DISTRICT *

 

State Senator Endorsements

Local 509 COPE has also endorsed the following people for State Senate based on their exemplary record of supporting 85% or more of our legislative priorities.

Full Title District 509 Voting Record
Sen. Barbara L’Italien SECOND ESSEX & MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 100 %
Sen. Jamie Eldridge MIDDLESEX & WORCESTER DISTRICT 100 %
Sen. Jason Lewis FIFTH MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 100 %
Sen. John Keenan NORFOLK & PLYMOUTH DISTRICT 100 %
Sen. Stan Rosenberg HAMPSHIRE, FRANKLIN & WORCESTER DISTRICT 100 %
Sen. Mike Moore SECOND WORCESTER DISTRICT 93 %
Sen. Katie O’Connor Ives CAPE & ISLANDS DISTRICT 92 %
Sen. Marc Pacheco FIRST PLYMOUTH & BRISTOL DISTRICT 91 %
Sen. Anne Gobi WORCESTER, HAMPDEN, HAMPSHIRE & MIDDLESEX DISTRICT 89 %
Sen. Eric Lessor FIRST HAMPDEN & HAMPSHIRE DISTRICT 89 %
Sen. Partrick O’Connor PLYMOUTH & NORFOLK DISTRICT 89 %
Adam Hinds BERKSHIRE, HAMPSHIRE, FRANKLIN & HAMPDEN DISTRICT *
Sen. Don Humanson SECOND HAMPDEN & HAMPSHIRE DISTRICT *
Julian Cyr CAPE & ISLANDS DISTRICT *
Sen. Walter Timilty NORFOLK, BRISTOL & PLYMOUTH DISTRICT *

*For open seat races, the Committee On Political Education interviewed candidates to assess if they were committed to 509’s legislative priorities. In some cases, incumbents who did not meet our strict 85% cutoff rating were endorsed based on being a recent champion of some of our highest priority legislation.

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Help Ensure Our Voices are Heard in November! // Asegurar que Nuestras Voces sean Escuchadas en Noviembre!

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Political Sign Up Buttons_ENGBelieve it or not, Election Day is just around the corner — and we only have a few weeks left to make a difference as we elect a new President, send legislators to represent us on Beacon Hill, and fight to preserve public education in Massachusetts.

As part of our effort to ensure the voices of human service workers and educators are heard on November 8th, SEIU 509 members will have the opportunity to participate in our fall Political Action Program.  As in previous years, we plan to do all we can to elect state and local elected leaders who understand the issues that matter most to SEIU members and the communities we serve. We’ll also fight to protect funding for our public schools by defeating Question 2 — in addition to campaigning in New Hampshire to help defeat Donald Trump’s destructive agenda.

I hope you’ll get involved by signing up here.

Our push for fairer workplaces and stronger communities doesn’t stop with the fall elections. We’ll need to work hard to support the allies we elect as they pursue a progressive legislative agenda in 2017 and beyond. From the fight for a $15/hour minimum wage, to making millionaires pay their fair share in taxes, to comprehensive immigration reform, to paid family and medical leave, we’ll need all hands on deck.  Sign up here to get involved in any or all of these important issues. 

The SEIU Political Action Program will launch on Thursday, October 13 and run through Election Day. So whether you’re interested in volunteering on a local campaign, getting involved in a ballot initiative, taking a trip to a presidential battleground state like New Hampshire or just staying informed of future opportunities, be sure to sign up using the online form. We’ll have updates soon on a host of events, from our upcoming member political action training to celebratory Election Night events.

This is an important political season for human service workers and educators throughout the Commonwealth and across the country. Even if you only have an hour or two to spare in the coming weeks, I hope you’ll get involved.  

Thank you for all you do!

Sincerely,
Tousignant Signature fname_tsp

Susan Tousignant, President

P.S. If you have any questions or need additional information, feel free to contact Bridget Quinn or Calvin Feliciano



Political Sign Up Buttons_ESPEl día de elección ya está por venir — solo tenemos un par de semanas en asegurarnos que hagamos las diferencia en lo que elijamos el nuevo presidente, los legislativos estatales quienes nos van a servir en Beacon Hill, y vamos a batallar para asegurar que preservemos la educación pública en Massachusetts. 

Como parte de nuestros esfuerzos y en asegurarnos que las voces de trabajadores sociales y de educadores sea escuchada vamos a tener un Programa Político Comenzando el 8 de noviembre. Como en años anteriores estamos planificando en hacer todo lo que podamos hacer para elegir un nuevo liderazgo. También vamos a batallar para proteger los fondos de pregunta dos y batallar contra Trump. 

Espero que se involucren y se inscríban aquí­. 

Nuestros esfuerzos por trabajos justos y comunidades fuertes no para con la elección del otoño. Vamos tener que seguir trabajando para apoyar los que nos apoyando a nosotros mientras ellos persiguen una agenda progresiva para el año 2017.  Desde nuestra batalla para un pago mínimo de $15 dólares la hora, hacer que los millonarios paguen su parte justa en impuestos, aun plan comprehensivo inmigratorio, y al tiempo pago de familia de atención médica, vamos a necesitar a todos ustedes. Inscríbase aquí para que se involucren en una de estas oportunidades.

El programa político de SEIU va a comenzar el 13 de octubre y va a continuar durante el día de elecciones. Si estas interesada en ser voluntario quieres ser parte de una campaña local y desea quedarse al día con las elecciones por favor inscríbase hoy en esta lista. 

Esta etapa electoral es sumamente importante para los trabajadores de servicios humanos y para educadores en nuestro estado. Si tienes una hora o dos por favor yo espero que ustedes se involucren.  

Gracias por todo lo que hacen.

Sinceramente,
Tousignant Signature fname_tsp

Susan Tousignant, Presidenta

P.D. Si tienen algunas preguntas y necesitan más información por favor contacten a Bridget Quinn o Calvin Feliciano.

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DNC Update 7/25: Spotlight shines on child care; Henry speaks on behalf of SEIU members

Rousing speeches by Michelle Obama, Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Sen. Bernie Sanders drove home messages of unity and of putting families first on the Democratic National Convention’s first day. Former President Bill Clinton speaks Tuesday night, as do the “mothers of the movement”—including the mothers of Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown, Eric Garner and Tamir Rice.

Panel explores public demand for child care reform:

SEIU along with The Hill, Make It Work Action, American Women, and the Domestic Workers Legacy Fund hosted a panel discussion on affordable and quality child care, paid leave and equal pay. They were joined by former Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis, Rep. Katherine Clark (D-Mass.) and others.

Panelists mentioned that these issues affect the economic security of all families, not just women. They went on to discuss the public demand for affordable, quality child care policies that also pay a living wage and the need for public investment now.

Tonia McMillian, SEIU Local 99 Executive Board member, joined the panel and expressed one of the many reasons why she is fighting for child care reform:

“Like the parents of the children we care for, child care providers need at least $15 an hour so we can keep our doors open and make ends meet. We’re talking to our friends, family and neighbors to make sure we elect candidates who will raise wages for child care providers and make child care affordable.”

Check out the SEIU Storify for photos and other social media posts from the DNC.

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August 1: Fight for $15 Brings ‘Moral Mondays’ to Boston!

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Vote Tuesday, March 1 | Polls Close at 8:00pm!

Dear Friends,Hillary SEIU_580p

Tuesday is Election Day, so I’ll get straight to the point: If we want real progress on the issues that will help us build a brighter future for human service workers, educators and the communities we serve, then we need to elect Hillary Clinton—and every one of us needs to get out and vote before 8:00pm on March 1.

Click here to find your polling location.

From the fight for living wages to our push to ensure universal access to quality education and child care, Hillary Clinton is best positioned to deliver on a progressive agenda that will make life better for working families across the country. For example:

  • Hillary has consistently spoken out in support of the Fight for $15 and a union, the growing movement built from brave working people getting out in the streets and making a bold demand on big corporations. Hillary endorsed the New York wage board fight that resulted in $15 for all fast food workers in the state. She has issued statements of public support for workers and their Fight for $15 and a union on all national days of action and has applauded decisions to raise wages to $15 in communities across the country.
  • Hillary understands the needs of home care providers and family child care providers who help educate our future generations and allow our seniors and those with disabilities to live with dignity at home. “One of the things I’m trying to do in this campaign is put raising wages at the center,” Clinton said at a roundtable in Los Angeles with SEIU home care providers. At a child care roundtable she joined in Chicago, she said, “When we short-change child care workers, we short-change kids and America’s future. ”
  • Hillary’s plan would guarantee up to 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave—an effort we are spearheading at the state level here in Massachusetts. Her proposal is funded by ensuring the wealthiest pay their fair share, not raising taxes on working families. “For many workers, staying home to take care of a sick child or an aging parent means losing a paycheck—or worse, even losing a job,” she said in November.  “That is an impossible choice we shouldn’t ask anyone to make—and yet American workers are forced to make it every day.”

All of this is why SEIU has endorsed Hillary Clinton for president, and the stakes couldn’t be higher. Find your polling place here — and make your plan now to vote for Hillary Clinton on Tuesday, March 1. Take a look at your calendar and make sure you will have time to get to the polls before 8:00pm.

Let’s not leave our families’ future to chance.

Thanks for all that you do,
Tousignant Signature fname_tsp

 

 

Susan Tousignant
President, SEIU Local 509

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Jobs, Justice and Climate: Rally to Defend New England’s Future Saturday


Right now, world leaders are meeting in Paris to negotiate a new global climate treaty. This is their 21st attempt, and we know that whatever agreement may result won’t be nearly as strong as we need it to be. This year is on track to be the hottest on record, and unprecedented storms, floods and droughts are happening around the world.

The cost of climate change will be high, and we know that middle class and low-income families will wind up paying the price. We need to do something about the situation now, before time runs out — and we need to do it in a way that protects workers and retirees.

On Saturday, December 12 people will come together from across New England to call for bold climate solutions that create secure union jobs, strengthen community power and help build a more resilient future. Join us to make your voice heard!


 Jobs, Justice and Climate: Rally to Defend New England’s Future

Saturday, December 12 — 1:00pm to 3:00pm
Boston Common, Boston


Check out the video above for more information — or visit our coalition website at www.JobsJusticeClimate.org.

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SEIU Endorses Hillary Clinton for President

Members: Clinton supports our movement to build a better future for working families

WASHINGTON — After a rigorous, months-long member engagement process, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) today endorsed Hillary Clinton for president, calling her a leader who will stand up for the working people building a movement to secure a better future for their families.

“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.”

“We are endorsing Hillary Clinton because she will stand up for working people like me when she’s in the White House, not the rich and powerful,” said Regina Sutton, a home care worker and member of SEIU Local 2015 in California.

SEIU’s member engagement included a 1,200-member conference in March, three national tele-town hall meetings in which more than 178,000 members participated, three national member polls from the fall of 2014 through the fall of 2015, more than 200 local executive board debates and discussions with thousands of local union officers and elected member leaders and local union member discussions representing 1.2 million SEIU members, which included leadership assemblies, live phone calls, worksite meetings, emails and text messages.

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.

“I’m very excited about our endorsement of Hillary Clinton for president,” said Ann Byrne, a member of SEIU Local 199 and nurse at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics. “I’m going to caucus for her, door-knock for her and phone bank for her. As a nurse for 26 years, I know that Hillary Clinton will defend and strengthen the Affordable Care Act so our patients get the care they need.”

SEIU’s 2 million members will join hands with community partners in a broad movement for economic, social, immigrant and racial justice. Along with the 64 million people who work at jobs paying poverty-level wages, they will be a powerful force during the 2016 elections. SEIU members will use their strength at the grassroots and community levels to support the candidates who will stand with them. 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.

 

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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. More information at www.seiu.org.

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