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 Melody Hugo for more information.

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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Springfield City Council Urges Clinical & Support Options to Value Mental Health Services, Providers

In unanimous vote, local elected officials join colleagues in Northampton, Greenfield in demanding a strong contract for Western Mass clinicians and crisis workers

Councilor Orlando Ramos, author of the Springfield Resolution. (photo via MassLive)

Councilor Orlando Ramos, author of the Springfield Resolution. (photo via MassLive)

SPRINGFIELD, MA – On the eve of what is expected to be a final negotiation session with agency management, the Springfield City Council voted unanimously Monday to support front-line clinicians and crisis workers in their fight for quality mental health care at the local branch of Clinical & Support Options (CSO). Authored by Council Vice President Orlando Ramos, the resolution sends a clear message that the City of Springfield stands with mental health workers who provide critical care – urging agency managers to return to the table “to reach a fair resolution that appropriately values these vital services and those who provide them.”

 A copy of the full resolution is available here.  

“The opioid epidemic is at the forefront of the local and national debate. These are the people who provide the services we need to tackle that crisis,” said City Council Vice President Orlando Ramos at Monday’s meeting. “We’re calling on Clinical & Support Options to negotiate in good faith with mental health and crisis workers – to value their important work.”

The Springfield resolution marks the latest call in a growing public outcry over the taxpayer-funded agency’s refusal to value essential mental health and crisis services in Western Massachusetts. City Councilors in Northampton unanimously passed their own resolution in support of CSO mental health workers in September, following similar action by the Greenfield Town Council in August. Community members throughout the region have sent more than 1,500 messages of concern to the agency’s Board of Directors and CEO as well.

“As mental health and crisis workers, we’re out in the community every single day working with some of Springfield’s most at-risk and vulnerable populations,” said Chassity Crowell-Miller, an outpatient clinician based at CSO’s Springfield facility. “This resolution sends a clear message that our elected leaders understand the importance of our work, and believe CSO must do more to support us in our efforts to keep communities safe and healthy.”

Clinicians and crisis workers staged their first demonstrations outside agency facilities in April to draw attention to near-poverty wages and severe workplace stress at CSO – serious challenges that have spurred high turnover that jeopardize the continuity and quality of client care. Agency managers rejected all attempts to address these grave issues in the ensuing months, ultimately leading to July’s three-day strike for quality care.

“The fact that these people are doing such critical work in our community and earning less than $15 an hour is unacceptable,” said Councilor Melvin Edwards. “The least CSO management can do is negotiate in good faith and come to a fair resolution.”

Despite public calls for action, Clinical & Support Options managers have refused to engage in meaningful dialogue over the serious challenges faced by the taxpayer-funded agency. The non-profit’s CEO, Karin Jeffers, has yet to attend a single negotiation session with front-line staff. A final negotiation session has been scheduled for the evening of Tuesday, October 6.

More than 350 clinicians and crisis workers at Clinical & Support Options provide vital services to over 14,000 at-risk children and families each year – from emergency mental health interventions and gang violence prevention to sexual abuse trauma and addiction treatment. With operations in Amherst, Athol, Florence, Greenfield, Northampton, Orange, Pittsfield and Springfield, their work is critical to the safety and wellbeing of families in more than 100 cities and towns throughout Western Massachusetts.

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Lawsuit Seeks to Curtail Workers’ Advocacy for Better Services, Stronger Communities

Public service workers on grant of writ of certiorari in Friedrichs v. CTA: Case jeopardizes American promise that hard work leads families to a decent life

WASHINGTON— SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry,  NEA President Lily Eskelsen García, AFT President Randi Weingarten, CTA President Eric C. Heins, and AFSCME President Lee Saunders  issued the following joint statement today in response to U.S. Supreme Court granting cert to Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association. The lawsuit seeks to curtail the freedom of child protection workers, nurses, teachers and first responders from working together to advocate for better services and stronger communities.

“We are disappointed that at a time when big corporations and the wealthy few are rewriting the rules in their favor, knocking American families and our entire economy off-balance, the Supreme Court has chosen to take a case that threatens the fundamental promise of America—that if you work hard and play by the rules you should be able to provide for your family and live a decent life. “The Supreme Court is revisiting decisions that have made it possible for people to stick together for a voice at work and in their communities—decisions that have stood for more than 35 years—and that have allowed people to work together for better public services and vibrant communities. “When people come together in a union, they can help make sure that our communities have jobs that support our families. It means teachers can stand up for their students. First responders can push for critical equipment to protect us. And social workers can advocate effectively for children’s safety. “America can’t build a strong future if people can’t come together to improve their work and their families’ futures. Moms and dads across the country have been standing up in the thousands to call for higher wages and unions. We hope the Supreme Court heeds their voices.”

And public servants are speaking out, too, about how Friedrichs v. CTA would undermine their ability to provide vital services the public depends on. In their own words:

“Our number one job is to protect at-risk children. Working together, front-line social workers and investigators have raised standards and improved policies that keep kids safe from abuse and neglect. I can’t understand why the Supreme Court would consider a case that could make it harder for us to advocate for the children and families we serve—this work is just too important.”—Ethel Everett, a child protection worker from Springfield, Mass. “As a school campus monitor, my job is to be on the front lines to make sure our students are safe. Both parents and students count on me—it’s a responsibility that I take very seriously. It’s important for me to have the right to voice concerns over anything that might impede the safety of my students, and jeopardizing my ability to speak up for them is a risk for everyone.”—Carol Peek, a school campus security guard from Ventura, Calif. “I love my students, and I want them to have everything they need to get a high-quality public education. When educators come together, we can speak with the district about class size, about adequate staffing, about the need for counselors, nurses, media specialists and librarians in schools. And we can advocate for better practices that serve our kids. With that collective voice, we can have conversations with the district that we probably wouldn’t be able to have otherwise―and do it while engaging our communities, our parents and our students.” —Kimberly Colbert, a classroom teacher from St. Paul, Minn. “As a mental health worker, my colleagues and I see clients who are getting younger and more physical. Every day we do our best work to serve them and keep them safe, but the risk of injury and attack is a sad, scary reality of the job. But if my coworkers and I come together and have a collective voice on the job, we can advocate for better patient care, better training and equipment, and safe staffing levels. This is about all of us. We all deserve safety and dignity on the job, because we work incredibly hard every day and it’s certainly not glamorous.” —Kelly Druskis-Abreu, a mental health worker from Worcester, Mass.

 

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Take Action to Stop the Attack on Earned Sick Time!

Urge your legislators to reject Senator Mike Rodrigues’ attempt to stall implementation of Earned Sick Time for working families!

Last fall, a vast majority of voters across the Commonwealth approved the Earned Sick Time ballot initiative. This critical legislation guarantees that every worker can earn up to 40 hours of sick time each year to care for themselves or the health of their families.

Despite overwhelming support in his own district and beyond, Senator Mike Rodrigues (Westport) is attempting to delay implementation of Earned Sick Time for working families. If his amendment is successful, more than a million workers could stand to lose a paycheck — or even their jobs — just for falling ill or needing to care for a sick child.

Rodrigues Earned Sick Time Attack Feature_580p

The vote on this amendment is coming up soon, so it is important that our Representatives and Senators hear from us right away. We need to send a clear message that Amendment 19 — and all other attempts to roll back Earned Sick Time for working families — must be defeated. Please take a moment to contact your Representative and Senator today.

As always, please feel free to contact Legislative & Political Director Chris Condon with any questions you may have.
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Mass. Residents Overwhelmingly Vote ‘YES on 4’ for Earned Sick Time!

YesOn4_300pThe Yes on Question 4 coalition issued the following statement about Question 4, which was approved by Massachusetts voters November 4 — and will ensure access to earned sick time for hundreds of thousands of Massachusetts families.

“Ted Kennedy said that ‘no one should have to choose between the job they need and the family they love.’ With passage of earned sick time, no parent in Massachusetts will be forced to choose between going to work to put food on the table and staying home to take care of a sick child. No worker will risk losing their job because they need to see a doctor.

This vote shows that the people of Massachusetts fundamentally believe that the ability to care and provide for themselves and family members is a right, not a privilege. Earned sick time will help small businesses succeed by making employees healthier and more productive, and will keep money in the hands of consumers who spend it in their neighborhoods, helping grow our local economies. For the almost one million workers in Massachusetts who today can’t take a single day of paid sick time, this vote is a major victory.”

When it takes effect on July 1, 2015, Question 4 will guarantee every worker in Massachusetts access to the benefit of earned sick time, and prohibit employer retaliation against workers who take time off due to illness.

  • At companies with 10 or fewer employees, workers will earn up to 40 hours of unpaid sick time to visit the doctor or take care of a sick family member.
  • At companies with 11 or more employees, workers will earn up to 40 hours of paid sick time.

Along with SEIU Local 509, Question 4 was supported by over 250 community organizations, religious groups, labor unions, businesses, and civic leaders, including the state’s leading hospitals and healthcare providers and the Alliance for Business Leadership — a group of 200 business leaders.

 

Raise Up Massachusetts, a coalition of more than 100 community organizations, religious groups, and labor unions, collected more than 360,000 signatures to put Question 4 and a minimum wage increase on the ballot. In June, the Legislature passed and Governor Patrick signed legislation giving Massachusetts the highest minimum wage in the country. Raise Up Massachusetts then led the campaign to ensure access to earned sick time for all workers in the Commonwealth by passing Question 4.

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2014 General Election Endorsements

Believe it or not, General Election Day is today — and the outcome of this race will have a major impact on the issues that matter most to important to human service workers and educators. It’s important that each and every one of us get out and vote!

To help inform these important decisions, the Local 509 Committee on Political Education (COPE) spent several weeks interviewing many of the candidates who will appear on the November 4th ballot. Members questioned incumbents and challengers alike on their stances on issues ranging from social service caseloads and earned sick time to collective bargaining and private sector wages. Based on these face-to-face interviews, candidate questionnaires and voting records, COPE has endorsed a host of workers’ rights champions for offices up and down the ballot. 


For polling locations, voting information and to view which races are on the ballot in your neighborhood, type in your home address at www.wheredoivotema.com.

Local 509 Endorsements:
Statewide
MA House
MA Senate

Check out the current Legislature’s voting record on the issues that matter to 509 members:
MA House Legislative Scorecard
MA Senate Legislative Scorecard


STATEWIDE ELECTION ENDORSEMENTS

Martha Coakley Headshot_rs

Governor

Martha Coakley

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Kerrigan_200p
Lieutenant Governor

Steve Kerrigan

Website | Facebook | Twitter

Healey Headshot_rs

Attorney General

Maura Healey

Website | Facebook | Twitter

 

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MA HOUSE ELECTION ENDORSEMENTS

 

Alphabetical by Last Name

509 Support Grade

Rep. Denise

Andrews

100%

Rep. James

Arciero

87%

Rep. Brian

Ashe

100%

Rep. Cory

Atkins

100%

Rep. Bruce

Ayers

88%

Rep. Ruth

Balser

100%

Christine

Barber

NA

Rep. Carlo

Basile

94%

Doug

Belanger

NA

Rep. Jennifer

Benson

100%

Rep. John

Binienda

95%

Rep. Garrett

Bradley

96%

Rep. Michael

Brady

100%

Rep. Paul

Brodeur

100%

Rep. Antonio

Cabral

100%

Rep. Tom

Calter

89%

Rep. Linda Dean

Campbell

84%

Rep. James

Cantwell

93%

Rep. Gailanne

Cariddi

100%

Rep. Evandro

Carvalho

100%

Matthew

Castriotta

NA

Rep. Tackey

Chan

100%

Rep. Nick

Collins

100%

Rep. Edward

Coppinger

100%

Rep. Michael

Costello

100%

Rep. Claire

Cronin

100%

Rep. Daniel

Cullinane

100%

Rep. Sean

Curran

84%

Rep. Mark

Cusack

100%

Rep. Josh

Cutler

100%

Michael

Day

NA

Rep. Marjorie

Decker

100%

Rep. Robert

DeLeo

100%

Rep. Brian

Dempsey

96%

Rep. Marcos

Devers

100%

Rep. Stephen

DiNatale

95%

Rep. Diana

DiZoglio

100%

Rep. Daniel

Donahue

100%

Rep. Paul

Donato

96%

Michelle

DuBois

NA

Keavin

Duffy, Jr.

NA

Rep. James

Dwyer

94%

Rep. Carolyn

Dykema

94%

Rep. Lori

Ehrlich

94%

Rep. Chris

Fallon

88%

Rep. Tricia

Farley-Bouvier

100%

Rep. Robert

Fennell

92%

Rep. John

Fernandes

94%

Rep. Ann-Margaret

Ferrante

100%

Christopher

Finn

NA

Rep. Michael

Finn

100%

Rep. Carole

Fiola

100%

Rep. Gloria

Fox

100%

Rep. William

Galvin

100%

Rep. Sean

Garballey

100%

Rep. Denise

Garlick

100%

Rep. Colleen

Garry

83%

Rep. Thomas

Golden

96%

Rep. Kenneth

Gordon

100%

Rep. Danielle

Gregoire

100%

Beverly Ann

Griffin-Dunne

NA

Rep. Patricia

Haddad

100%

Rep. Jonathan

Hecht

100%

Rep. Paul

Heroux

100%

Ari

Herzog

NA

Rep. Kate

Hogan

100%

Rep. Russell

Holmes

100%

Rep. Kevin

Honan

100%

Rep. Daniel

Hunt

100%

Rep. Louis

Kafka

100%

Rep. Jay

Kaufman

100%

Rep. Mary

Keefe

100%

Rep. John

Keenan

100%

Rep. Kay

Khan

100%

Rep. Peter

Kocot

100%

Rep. Robert

Koczera

95%

Rep. Stephen

Kulik

100%

Rep. John

Lawn

100%

Rep. David

Linsky

100%

Rep. Jay

Livingstone

100%

Rep. Timothy

Madden

100%

Rep. John

Mahoney

100%

Rep. Liz

Malia

100%

Rep. Brian

Mannal

100%

Rep. Ronald

Mariano

96%

Rep. Paul

Mark

100%

Rep. Christopher

Markey

100%

Joe

McGonagle

NA

Rep. Aaron

Michlewitz

100%

Rady

Mom

NA

Rep. Frank

Moran

100%

Rep. Mike

Moran

100%

David

Muradian

NA

Rep. James

Murphy

92%

Rep. David

Nangle

88%

Rep. Harold

Naughton, Jr.

100%

Rep. Rhonda

Nyman

100%

Rep. James

O’Day

100%

Rep. Jerald

Parisella

100%

Rep. Sarah

Peake

100%

Rep. Alice

Peisch

100%

Rep. Thomas

Petrolati

95%

Rep. Smitty

Pignatelli

100%

Rep. Denise

Provost

100%

Rep. Angelo

Puppolo

90%

Gene

Rauhala

NA

Rep. David

Rogers

100%

Rep. John

Rogers

92%

Rep. Dennis

Rosa

93%

Rep. Jeffrey

Roy

100%

Rep. Byron

Rushing

100%

Rep. Daniel

Ryan

100%

Rep. Jeffrey

Sanchez

100%

Rep. Tom

Sannicandro

100%

Rep. Angelo

Scaccia

96%

Rep. Paul

Schmid

100%

Rep. John

Scibak

100%

Rep. Alan

Silvia

100%

Rep. Frank

Smizik

100%

Rep. Theodore

Speliotis

96%

Rep. Thomas

Stanley

88%

Rep. Ellen

Story

100%

Rep. William

Straus

96%

Rep. Benjamin

Swan

100%

Matthew

Terry

NA

Rep. Walter

Timilty

88%

Rep. Timothy

Toomey, Jr.

100%

Jose

Tosado

NA

Rep. Cleon

Turner

95%

Rep. Aaron

Vega

100%

Rep. John

Velis

100%

Rep. RoseLee

Vincent

100%

Rep. Joseph

Wagner

91%

Rep. Chris

Walsh

100%

Rep. Jonathan

Zlotnik

100%

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MA SENATE ELECTION ENDORSEMENTS

Alphabetical by Last Name

509 Support Grade

Sen. William

Brownsberger

90%

Sen. Gale

Candaras

95%

Sen. Harriette

Chandler

96%

Sen. Sonia

Chang-Diaz

100%

Sen. Cynthia

Creem

100%

Sen. Sal

DiDomenico

100%

Sen. Kenneth

Donnelly

100%

Sen. Eileen

Donoghue

90%

Sen. Linda

Dorcena-Forry

100%

Sen. Benjamin

Downing

100%

Sen. James

Eldridge

100%

Sen. Barry

Finegold

100%

Sen. Jennifer

Flanagan

89%

Rep. Anne

Gobi

92%

Dylan

Hayre

NA

Sen. Pat

Jehlen

100%

Sen. John

Keenan

100%

Sen. Thomas

Kennedy

94%

Barbara

L’Italien

NA

Patrick

Leahy

NA

Eric

Lesser

NA

Sen. Jason

Lewis

100%

Sen. Joan

Lovely

100%

Sen. Tom

McGee

100%

Sen. Mark

Montigny

88%

Sen. Michael

Moore

89%

Sen. Pres. Therese

Murray

89%

Sen. Kathleen

O’Connor-Ives

100%

Sen. Marc

Pacheco

92%

Sen. Anthony

Petruccelli

95%

Sen. Michael

Rodrigues

92%

Sen. Stanley

Rosenberg

100%

Sen. Michael

Rush

91%

Sen. Karen

Spilka

96%

Sen. James

Welch

100%

Sen. Daniel

Wolf

100%

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Questions? Need additional information? Contact the Local 509 Legislative & Political Department at (617) 924-8509 x515 or email ccondon@seiu509.org.

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The REAL Charlie Baker Record: Get the Facts

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SEIU 509 COPE Endorses Steve Kerrigan for Lieutenant Governor

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, September 5, 2014
Contact: Jason A Stephany, (617) 286-4430, jstephany@seiu509.org

SEIU Human Service Workers, Educators Endorse Kerrigan for Lieutenant Governor

Kerrigan speaks to human service workers at LifeLinks, Inc. workers before joining the picket line. (Aug 21, 2014)

Kerrigan speaks to human service workers at LifeLinks, Inc. workers before joining the picket line. (Aug 21, 2014)

Union cites hands-on leadership style, outspoken advocacy on behalf of workers’ rights

WATERTOWN, MA – The Mass. Union for Human Service Workers and Educators, SEIU Local 509 Committee on Political Education (COPE), today announced its endorsement of Steve Kerrigan in the race for Lieutenant Governor – citing his hands-on leadership and outspoken advocacy around key issues of importance to working families.

SEIU Local 509 represents more than 17,000 human service workers and educators throughout Massachusetts, and is among the Commonwealth’s most progressive and politically active labor organizations. The union has a proud history of aggressive primary endorsements that have made a difference in major electoral contests – from the first campaign of Governor Deval Patrick to the recent election of Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.

“From our shared efforts to improve child safety to the fight to expand access to early education, Steve Kerrigan isn’t afraid to stand up and speak out on the issues that matter most,” said Christine Crean, Chair of the SEIU Local 509 Committee on Public Education (COPE) and a longtime social worker. “Working families have a true champion in Steve Kerrigan, and we are proud to endorse him as our next Lieutenant Governor.”

SEIU human service workers and educators participated in a transparent, member-driven endorsement process for races up and down the ballot – including forums, questionnaires and face-to-face meetings with the candidates. In the race for Lieutenant Governor, Kerrigan stood far above other candidates in his willingness to directly engage with workers and seek solutions to complicated challenges.

“Steve Kerrigan was right there with us on the picket lines, doing everything he could to support workers in our fight for fair wages and dignity on the job.” said Deborah Martin, a veteran day habilitation specialist who helped lead the successful August strike at LifeLinks, Inc. “That’s exactly the kind of Lieutenant Governor we need – someone who will roll up his sleeves and do whatever it takes to get the job done.”

 

“As someone who was raised in a strong union household, I’m proud to have stood with working people my entire career – in local, state and federal government – and I’m thrilled to have the support of the human service workers and educators of SEIU Local 509,” said Kerrigan. “The issues facing these front-line workers are real and they need a voice in the Corner Office who will be with them, work with them and, when needed, stand with them. I’m honored to be that candidate and I’ll be honored to be that Lieutenant Governor.”

 

The Union for Human Service Workers and Educators in Massachusetts, SEIU Local 509, represents over 17,000 workers throughout the commonwealth. SEIU 509 members provide a variety of educational and social services to at-risk children, elders and people with mental illnesses and developmental disabilities. Local 509 is part of the Service Employees International Union, the largest and fastest-growing labor union in the United States.

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SATURDAY, MARCH 15: SEIU Massachusetts Governor’s Election Forum

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