SEIU Local 2015 7/13 Care is Essential Press Release

July 13, 2021
Posted in Press
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California’s Largest Union of Caregivers Host “Care is Essential” Events Demanding State and Federal Investment in Nation’s Most Essential Workforce

Twin Events Held in Los Angeles and Oakland Call for Support of the American Jobs Plan’s $400B Investment in Homecare, Pathway to $20 Hourly Wages and more

Los Angeles, CA — July 13, 2021 — Today, Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 2015 — California’s largest union representing more than 400,000 long term caregivers and its partnered coalition of held two simultaneous, live “Care is Essential” rallies in Los Angeles and Oakland.

The twin events, which fall under a nationwide day of action, united thousands of care workers, care consumers, advocates and partners to demand greater federal, state and local investment in America’s care infrastructure to improve care, better working conditions and build a pathway to a $20 hourly wage for caregivers and the middle class. The actions arrive in response to the ongoing deliberation of President Biden’s American Jobs Plan and its $400 billion investment in quality homecare, while nearly 200,000 Los Angeles County and Alameda County homecare workers prepare to negotiate their first post-pandemic contract. Los Angeles County is currently home to the largest contract fight covering essential workers since the pandemic and serves as a glimpse into what homecare workers across the nation have at stake.

“This workforce is the backbone of this country,” said SEIU local 2015 President April Verrett. “The contributions they make to our communities in need are vital and oftentimes these workers are in need themselves with the poverty level wages they are given. The neglect our homecare workers face every day is relentless and it stops here. We need to reflect the impact these workers have on this country in the way they are compensated and invested in.”

Los Angeles and Oakland were two of 24 cities nationwide to take to the streets demanding good unions, living-wage jobs and a down payment to expand access across the care system. Leaders including SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry, U.S. Representative Jimmy Gomez, Senator Bob J. Archuleta, United Domestic Workers of America (UDW) Executive Director Doug Moore joined various advocate partners and California’s caregivers to voice their support for President Biden’s care plan, which would create a million new care jobs, lift up essential care workers, and address skyrocketing needs for care. Home care is also the nation’s fastest-growing job sector, as roughly 10,000 Americans turn 65 each day. The U.S. will need to fill an estimated 4.7 million home care jobs, including over one million new jobs, by 2028.

This workforce – predominantly made up of Black, Latina, Asian, and immigrant women – have historically been left behind in access to basic worker’s rights. SEIU Local 2015’s “Care is Essential” events uplift the critical issues that threaten the well-being of an already undervalued labor force. The actions ignite a wave of continued pressure on Congress to make milestone decisions that protect America’s homecare workers whose livelihoods are at stake.

To learn more about SEIU Local 2015 visit www.SEIU2015.org or on social media @SEIU2015.

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ABOUT SEIU LOCAL 2015

Representing over 400,000 long term care workers (home care, skilled nursing facility, and assisted living center workers), SEIU Local 2015 is the largest union in California. Its members are as diverse as the state’s population but united in their commitment to caring for California’s most vulnerable: seniors and the disabled.