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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 26, 2011
11:42 AM

CONTACT: Service Employees International Union (SEIU)

Ali Jost, 202-730-7159
Mark McCullough, 202-730-7283
Kawana Lloyd, 202-730-7087

SEIU's Henry: Women's Equality Day a Reminder that Equality is Never Optional, Always Necessary

WASHINGTON - August 26 - In recognition of Women’s Equality Day, Mary Kay Henry, International President of the Service Employees International Union issued the following statement:

“Ninety-one years ago today, American women won the right to vote in a victory that brought our country one step closer to equality.

“Universal suffrage opened the door to equality that reshaped America. These courageous women set the precedent for female scientists to explore the next frontiers of medicine and female astronauts to explore the last frontiers of our universe. The success of women in business, politics, healthcare and education today has its roots in the willingness of a few bold and brave women to stand up for what they believed in more than nine decades ago.

“The legacy of these courageous leaders continues in the millions of women who lead every day. Today, we celebrate the mother who is raising children on her own and still managing to put food on the table. Today, we celebrate the caregiver whose true colors shine through as she nurtures those in need. Today, we celebrate the teacher who is as committed to the success of the children in her classroom as she is to the success of her own.

“The courage of these women reminds us that equality is never optional, and is always necessary.

“Even as we celebrate National Women’s Equality Day, we cannot lose sight of the work yet to be done to achieve full equality. The remaining wage gap in this country is an affront to the millions of hardworking women who deserve the same compensation as their male counterparts.

“While some extremist politicians seek to divide us with attacks on immigrants, the middle class, reproductive rights and the LGBT community, the legacy of the fight for universal suffrage nine decades ago reminds us that we cannot live up to our promise as a nation until we extend equal rights to all people.”

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With 2 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.


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