DEARBORN, Mich., April 12 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Hundreds of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) members from across the country joined in protest tonight, renouncing recent actions by the California Nurses Association (CNA) to interfere in other unions' organizing efforts. SEIU members made their voices heard during the Labor Notes Conference in Dearborn, Michigan, where CNA Executive Director Rose Ann DeMoro was scheduled to speak but cancelled at the last minute, anticipating the scrutiny her actions were expected to receive. Below is a statement from SEIU Executive Vice President Mary Kay Henry:
"Tonight, SEIU members stood up for the future of the labor movement and called on the California Nurses Association to stop fighting with other unions and start helping us build a stronger labor movement to help all workers reclaim the American Dream.
"At a time when the economy is in a downward spiral, when income inequality and economic uncertainty are at record levels and when only 12.1 percent of the U.S. workforce has union representation, we simply can not abide by union-busting and member poaching between unions. Unions must stand united for the interests of working people.
"The more than 800 SEIU members who traveled to Dearborn from all parts of the country tonight would much rather be at home: holding their local state and national representatives accountable; going door to door to elect pro-worker candidates; and helping security officers, janitors, healthcare workers, and other service workers unite to attain a voice on the job. But CNA's recent actions threaten the future of the labor movement for all workers -- and we cannot remain silent.
"Open debate serves an important role as we work to strengthen our movement. The Labor Notes Conference is the right time and place to discuss our differences. Emergency room hallways and days before contentious union elections are not.
"Our ability as workers, progressives, and labor leaders to ensure that unions play a role in mending the economic woes of our nation depends on our ability to grow and our ability to work together. Tonight we call on CNA Executive Director Rose Ann DeMoro and the entire labor movement to take a deep breath, to realize what is at stake, and to put the interests of working people ahead of union differences."
SOURCE Service Employees International Union