SEIU Local 521
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, September 3, 2018
Contact: Victor Gamiz
Central Valley Workers and Allies Reclaim Labor Day in Bakersfield
Over 22 Unions Come Together to Celebrate the Contributions to Our Community
(Bakersfield, CA) In the face of growing attacks from wealthy special interests and billionaires, hard-working people rose up today and celebrated the vital contributions we make to life in the Central Valley during a Labor Day event organized for the community by SEIU Local 521.
Over 22 unions from Kern County came together and highlighted the victories of the labor movement. The celebration included a march and rally that energized the crowd of county and hospital workers, families and community leaders. There were various community resources booths along with a voter registration booth.
Family Child Care Providers rallied among the community and shared their fight to have a union and the right to collectively bargain.
“We as Family Child Care Providers are fighting to improve our lives. We know that together, with community support our strength in action can win us collective bargaining rights and a seat at the table,” said Debra Corley. “It is shameful that we are not covered by b
asic things like the minimum wage and workplace safety rules. We do not receive any health benefits, and do not have access to workplace retiremen programs. Too often, family child care providers find ourselves earning poverty wages and being unable to support our own families. We are proud to stand with our union brothers and sisters today on Labor Day as we continue our fight to win.”
California is seen as the leading-edge state for policies that support the diverse working families that make up our communities, and Labor Day kicks off an election season that is being watched more than most. Elected officials and candidates including Assemblymember Rudy Salas, Leticia Perez, Kern County Board of Supervisor District 5, Jeff Heinle, Candidate for Kern County Board of Supervisors District 3, Grace Vallejo, Candidate for Kern County Board of Supervisors District 4, TJ Cox, Candidate for Congressional District 21, Tatiana Mata, Candidate for Congressional District 23, and Melissa Hurtado, Candidate for State Senate District 14 were in attendance to show their support for union rights.
According to a recent study by the UC Berkeley Labor Center, our unions help improve the wages and benefits of all workers in California – both union and nonunion – as well as help address racial and gender inequality. On average, California’s union women earn 26% more than nonunion women. Similarly, Black workers earn 19% more and Latino/a workers earn 40% more on average under a union contract.