HELP Committee hearing on the middle class highlights need for job creation

WASHINGTON, DC — After the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing on the state of the middle class, Mary Kay Henry, President of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), issued the following statement:

“Today’s hearing highlighted the dire situation facing working families in our country. More and more families are falling out of the middle class instead of rising into it. Millions are losing their jobs and there seems to be no end in sight to the sacrifices they are being asked to make.

“There is no more important part to rebuilding the middle class than putting America back to work. That means the public and private sectors must work together to create good jobs that can support a family. A good start is fixing our crumbling infrastructure and providing incentives for corporations to bring jobs back home.

“The state of America’s shrinking middle class is one reason that the National Labor Relations Board’s proposed rule that would restore fairness to the union election process is a positive step for workers. The rule would potentially eliminate unnecessary delays that prevent workers from voting whether to form a union. Joining a union is the most effective way for workers to bargain for better wages, benefits and working conditions. Unions help bring workers into the middle class.

“In this economy, with millions of Americans struggling to get by, anything the federal government can do to help more workers gain access to the American Dream and improve their lives should be welcomed.”


With 2.1 million members in Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in the Americas. Focused on uniting workers in healthcare, public services and property services, SEIU members are winning better wages, healthcare and more secure jobs for our communities, while uniting their strength with their counterparts around the world to help ensure that workers–not just corporations and CEOs–benefit from today’s global economy.

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