WASHINGTON, DC - Later today, TIME Magazine will honor Ai-jen Poo, Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, and Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, at the magazine's annual TIME 100 Gala in New York City for their transformative work standing up for working people and women. Ahead of tonight's gala, Mary Kay Henry, International President of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) issued the following statement:
"On behalf of the more than 2.1 million members of SEIU, I congratulate Ai-jen Poo and Cecile Richards for this tremendous and deserved honor. These women are national leaders who stand up every day for a better vision and the right values for the future. Their leadership has played a transformative role in the lives of working people, immigrant families and women in every corner of this country.
"Ai-jen Poo leads the fight to restore basic respect for work and dignity for every human being. She has helped countless hard-working, low-wage maids, cleaners and other domestic workers envision a better future for themselves and their families. Ai-jen's vision for America captures so much of what is good about this country -the idea that every person who works hard should earn a decent wage, that every person deserves justice and respect and that every person seeking a better life should have the opportunity to create it.
"For years, Cecile Richards has been a tireless advocate for women and families, never afraid of doing what is right for women's healthcare, regardless of the political climate. In moments of crisis, Cecile's leadership is unmatched, refusing to allow extremists to turn the serious issue of women's rights to affordable and quality healthcare into a game of political football. In every aspect of her work, Cecile demands equity for all women and all families.
"Ai-jen and Cecile exemplify the notion that an attack on one group of us -- women, immigrants, people of color -- is an attack on all of us. They are fearless, inspiring warriors in the social and economic justice movement - and for that we are grateful."
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. www.seiu.org