Cayenna Johnson is a proud member of Colorado WINS, the SEIU state employees union in Colorado. She works with children and youth who are refugees, orphans and victims of trafficking as a Social Services Specialist in the Department of Human Services.
Without the right to negotiate a union contract, she and her coworkers would lack a strong voice to advocate for their jobs and the people they help every day.
That's why she recently traveled to Washington, DC to speak in support of the Public Service Freedom To Negotiate Act, a bill that would give public employees the freedom to collectively bargain a union contract regardless of the state they live in.
Joining a union has left a profound impression on Cayenna, helping her develop professionally and giving her the tools to better serve those in need.
“When I joined my union, I met a group of like-minded brothers and sisters who have supported me and made me feel welcome. Together, we form a network of support in the workplace for ourselves and others. In child welfare, we know the best outcomes for families are collaborative and assume positive intent; as employees, we want the same treatment. We’re committed to creating a work culture that retains employees and that would not leave bullied and abused coworkers isolated. We know that the way we treat each other transfers to the families we serve. Joining together in a union helps us achieve these goals.”
This collaborative and supportive environment has lead to success! As a union, they kept the pressure on the state to increase wages, resulting in statewide increases five of the last six years with 3% increases three years in a row. Imagine what else they will be able to do when they win collective bargaining rights.
Cayenna is committed to fighting for unions for all in Colorado and around the country. She also knows that in order for this to happen, our political leaders need to do more to support working people.
“No matter what you look like, where you live, or what you do, everyone deserves the right to join a union. Being in a union empowers me to do the best job I can. Now our political leaders must do more than talk about unions for all, they must take steps to make it a reality. Prove to us you are part of the solution.”