WASHINGTON, DC — SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry made the following statement today reacting to the news that Congressional Democrats have reached a budget agreement:
“Congress must advance the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 as quickly as possible. The package will reduce the costs of healthcare premiums and make prescription drugs more affordable for millions of families while finally holding big pharmaceutical companies accountable. This legislation makes large-scale investments to address the crisis of climate change, which is disproportionately impacting our members, many of whom live in the most vulnerable communities, and will create hundreds of thousands of good union green energy jobs. Even better, it will be paid for by raising taxes on giant corporations that have made record profits by increasing prices and holding down our wages.
This deal is a major and historic step forward, but it is still not all that we had hoped for and fought for. Congress had the chance to provide solutions to our care crisis, which would have created millions of good union jobs for a largely women of color workforce while making home- and community-based care more accessible to those who need it, including seniors, people with disabilities and families with young children. With each day we fail to address it, the problem is only getting worse.
Care workers and SEIU’s 2 million members are not giving up the fight to expand access to affordable care and change this industry and will hold a candidate town hall focused on care in Atlanta next month. Even as we celebrate the progress made today, we continue to hold elected leaders accountable for creating an economy that works for all families.”