Fighting for Long Term Care Workers and a Brighter American Future
Laphonza Butler is President of SEIU Local 2015, President of the SEIU California State Council and Vice President of SEIU International. She is passionate about working with Local 2015 members to make sure what they do is a central part of our sustainable health care future. Key to this effort is ensuring that all long term care workers are able to financially support themselves, and this is why Laphonza has led the fight to end wage theft and raise the minimum wage in Los Angeles to $15 an hour: “Raising the wage and ensuring that workers actually receive a full paycheck is critical to continuing to grow the Los Angeles economy and ensuring workers can move toward the middle class.” And if we could raise the wage in Los Angeles, the second largest city in the nation, we can do it anywhere and everywhere.
But the movement for more respect for long term care workers is about more than money. It is about bringing communities across California and the nation together around the idea that their most vulnerable members deserve a better quality of life, and that all people have something to contribute when properly supported. This is why Laphonza Butler has sought out and forged fruitful partnerships with other labor organizations, politicians and community groups. She has advocated for all workers to have the right to join a union, and before leading SEIU Local 2015, she helped win important contracts for security officers and food service workers.
Laphonza has also established a national voice through articles in The Huffington Post and other outlets. In a recent piece about the 2016 elections, she placed the needs of home care workers and the patients who rely on them directly in front of the candidates: “At a time when home care workers — and the providers who care for them — are gearing up to vote, candidates must address the increasing numbers of elders who rely on a quality home care workforce to age with dignity and the dedicated workers who care for them who continue to live without the adequate pay and resources their families need.”
Indeed, the stakes in the upcoming election are very high. By reminding candidates that they cannot ignore the workers who keep our healthcare system functioning, Laphonza Butler is helping to ensure that this system will continue to evolve in more just and inclusive ways.