On Labor Day, Hospital Workers Took to the Streets to Fight for $15 and a Union!

LaborDay16_crowd_shot_Thompson_Center_cropped(September 4th, 2017, Chicago) — SEIU Hospital workers took to the streets to fight for a $15 starting wage and the right for all workers to be able to join a union in the largest Labor Day protest in years.

SEIU Healthcare members joined with striking fast-food workers and a host of workers from different industries such as nursing homes, child care, home care, and airports.

Hospital workers started in Pilsen in the early morning hours where McDonald’s workers went on strike. Katina McDavis, an EVS worker at Northwestern Hospital, emceed a press event that included SEIU President Mary Kay Henry.

WCIU Chicago: On Labor Day, Northwestern Hospital Worker Katina McDavis Fights for $15 and a Union!

Video Round Up: Hospital Workers Demand $15 and a Union on Labor Day

Katina McDavis gave the following statement on Labor Day which summed up the voices and the reasons why hospital workers are standing up and taking action. LaborDay4

I work at Northwestern Memorial Hospital where I serve in the environmental services department.

My job is to sterilize and sanitize rooms and to safely prepare them for our patients.

I am HONORED as a hospital worker to stand shoulder to shoulder with the Fight for $15 workers who are ON STRIKE TODAY!

I work in a large, multi-billion dollar company at Northwestern Hospital that also refuses to pay its workers what we are worth.

On this historic Labor Day, hospital workers are fighting for our rights: 1) to earn $15 an hour as a starting wage; and 2) for all workers to have the opportunity to join a UNION.

Non-union hospital workers – just like McDonald’s workers – deserve a voice and to be treated with respect and dignity – that’s why we’re marching today!

I am, indeed, a PROUD union member of SEIU Healthcare Illinois for 18 years. And I know the difference that being in a union makes.

Let me be clear:

I have a better wage BECAUSE I’m in a Union!

I have respect and dignity in my hospital BECAUSE I’m in a Union!

I have power and a voice BECAUSE I’m in a Union!DSC_0600ed

Later today all of us are going to protest the American Hospital Association.

The agenda of the Hospital Association – just like all large corporations – is to maximize their profits.

They keep wages low for frontline workers and make it difficult to form unions, denying us our basic rights and voices on the job.

Does this sound at all familiar to my brothers and sisters who work hard at McDonald’s?

DSC_0326Our economy is rigged but so is our political system.

Gov. Bruce Rauner just vetoed our $15 minimum wage bill.

Gov. Rauner hates unions so much that he’s willing to punish working families just to further his extreme anti-worker agenda.

That’s why are also committing ourselves to not just protest these anti-worker politicians  – BUT TO ALSO VOTE THEM OUT OF OFFICE!

We pledge to work hard from now until the election in November 2018 to elect candidates who will support our demand for a $15 minimum wage – AND defeat politicians like Bruce Rauner who simply don’t care about working people.

Thank you.

SEIU President Mary Kay Henry speaks outside the American Hospital Association on Labor Day to demand that hospital workers are paid a fair wage of $15 an hour and to join a union.

SEIU President Mary Kay Henry speaks outside the American Hospital Association on Labor Day to demand that hospital workers are paid a fair wage of $15 an hour and to join a union.

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