Local 2015 works to ensure and maximize participation beyond just voting for everyone at every level of government. Together, we will dismantle the policies, systems, and structures that prevent participation, and eliminates structural racism that denies us of our rights.
How Do We Accomplish This?
Members become active participants in their democracy year round to provide continued education to elected officials about the challenges facing long term care workers and our communities; advocating for the solutions required and using the power of their voice and vote to hold elected officials accountable to their commitments. Through this we can work to:
- Equip our Democracy Captains and Member Leaders with the tools and knowledge necessary for us to be effective agents of political and community change.
- Recruit and train long-term care workers to run for office and be leaders in their community.
- Advocate for full participation in our democracy by working to break down barriers and further support the full participation of women, people of color and immigrants in our political process, which includes but is not limited to: increasing voter education, voter registration, voter participation and citizenship.
- Elect champions for long term care, thereby ensuring that all long-term care workers in California are able to live with dignity and respect. Click here to see who and what we are fighting for this election.
What Have We Accomplished So Far?
- We won overtime pay, wait time pay, and travel time pay for IHSS providers in 2016.
- In 2021, we successfully fought off the 7% cuts to the IHSS program and secured a commitment from the Governor to invest $200 million in IHSS training, recognizing the vital role that home care workers have in taking care of seniors and persons with disabilities.
- When the COVID-19 pandemic hit in 2020, we fought for federal paid sick leave for IHSS providers. We continue to work at the federal and state level to make sure our members benefit from historic nationwide investments in long-term care infrastructure and continue to find opportunities to grow in their careers and bargain for better compensation.
- In 2018, we passed SB 97, which raised the minimum staffing standards for direct care workers in skilled nursing facilities in California. Our union continues to explore ways to ensure compliance with these standards and to protect our members from the stresses and risks associated with short staffing.
- In 2019, we passed AB 1695 to hold nursing home employers accountable when a change of ownership occurs and to protect the existing employees at the facility.
- In 2021, we pushed for greater transparency and accountability in our state’s nursing homes as part of a collaborative effort with a number of other long-term care advocates and won passage of two bills: SB 650 and AB 1042. SB 650 gives the public more information on nursing homes, many of which are privately owned by large for-profit chains that utilize increasingly elaborate corporate structures to hide their finances and shield themselves from oversight. It aims to prevent owners from enriching themselves while their facilities are understaffed, lack supplies, and pay poverty wages. AB 1042 furthers our efforts by closing existing loopholes that nursing facility owners exploit to use “third party payments” to shell companies in order to evade accountability for abuse and substandard care.
Electing Long-Term Allies
- In 2020, SEIU 2015 members volunteered hours to help elect allies in Arizona.
- We also helped elect longtime labor ally Holly Mitchell to the L.A. Board of Supervisors.
- And we successfully pushed to ensure that Los Angeles County has a District Attorney, George Gascón, who is committed to transforming our broken criminal justice system into one that provides real equality under the law for all of us no matter where we live or the color of our skin.
- During the 2018 election cycle, we worked to elect a Governor who shares our priorities for long-term care, and successfully fought off an attempt to recall the Governor and undo the progress and protections we’ve been able to win throughout the pandemic.
- We also focused efforts in key Congressional races across the state, winning several seats for long-term care advocates and sending many allies to Washington, D.C.
Caregivers Action Fund
Elected officials make decisions every day that impact the lives of long term care workers, our clients, and working families across the country.
And with wealthy special interests spending huge sums to attempt to take away our rights and our hard-fought victories, it’s vital that we come together to build our collective power, and to hold politicians accountable for their decisions.
That’s why we’ve created the Caregivers Action Fund (CAF).
Like union membership, the Caregivers Action Fund is an opportunity to invest in the future of our work as long term care providers. The Caregivers Action Fund allows long term care workers to put our dollars together to support candidates who will fight for caregivers, our clients, and our families, and hold politicians accountable.
Because of our members’ investments in the Caregivers Action Fund, we’ve won huge increases in our state’s minimum wage, increased state funding for In-Home Supportive Services, and elected representatives to Congress that are fighting to expand Medicaid and make quality affordable care available to all Americans.