Building a democracy where everybody counts – Mary Kay Henry addresses UNI Property Services conference
“Inspirational and motivating!”
That was the verdict from UNI Global Property Service delegates on the key-note speech at this year’s sector conference.
Mary Kay Henry, President of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), addressed union leaders on the opening day of the meeting in Chicago which marks 20 years of the Property Services sector at UNI.
Speaking on the crucial role of unions in addressing deepening, systemic inequality in society Henry said: “Sisters and brothers, we owe a debt to the working people who came before us and built our unions. They fought hard not just for higher pay but for democracy itself, fighting for voting rights so that working people could be part of building a better society for all.
“We need to restore the strength of our unions so that working people can regain that power. We need to push ourselves to build inclusive, multiracial unions that empower all working people -- Black, brown and white -- to join together across our differences.”
The SEIU ‘Unions for All’ campaign is using the 2020 presidential elections to re-orient U.S. politics to put access to unions at the centre of candidates’ economic platforms.
Delegates were buoyed by the speech.
“It’s really great to hear about how a union in our sector is leading the way and thinking big,” Eddy Stam, Head of UNI Property Services said. “We have to fight for good jobs for our members, and an important way to do that is making sure that unions are a powerful force for justice in the workplace and in society. Being part of a global union is all about learning together and acting together, and we’re really getting the chance to do that here.”