REMARKS AS PREPARED
LIUNA Northwest Regional Conference
June 4, 2018
Good morning. Thank you, Bob, for that introduction. I am delighted to join the 2018 LIUNA Northwest Region Conference.
Governor Inslee, thank you for hosting us here today in Washington.
Mayor McEnerny-Ogle, we’re delighted to be in The Couve.
As I look out across the room, it’s wonderful to see so many familiar faces.
We know that the landscape has changed in recent years. Particularly in this last year, we’ve seen a great deal of changes on the national political landscape. Today, our unions face new challenges and are under increased pressure.
What has not changed, is LIUNA’s commitment to its members, and to improving the lives of working Americans.
In Oregon and Washington, we value our unions. We know just how critically important the right to organize is. We know the right to organize is key to ensuring the rising tide of prosperity lifts all boats.
Last year, I was proud to sign into law HB 3170. It expanded union rights to Oregon colleges and universities and empowered professors to organize.
We also, last year, made the largest investment in Oregon’s transportation infrastructure in state history. The $5.4 billion package, is expected to spur nearly 16,000 jobs statewide.
And recently, Oregon made history and set a national precedence when workers at a Portland Burgerville became the first fast-food workers in the nation to unionize.
Everyone here knows that’s the good news. Because we know attacks on unions are coming.
So in Oregon, we're partnering with labor to figure out the best path forward to ensure our workers are well-trained, that they can support their families, and that they can continue to be vital partners in our communities.
Everyone in this room knows unions built our middle class. Even today, as too many workers are being pushed out, LIUNA is working to change our laws. Our unions are here to give workers a fighting chance.
Unions are on the forefront, fighting for working families. Fighting for jobs, fair pay, and more affordable housing in more communities across our states.
Fighting to fix a rigged economy that’s hurting hard-working Americans. An economy that disproportionately hurts women, workers of color, and immigrant workers.
In Oregon, and in Washington, we will stand shoulder to shoulder fighting for workers rights.
When working people have the freedom to come together, we can lift all families. By working together, we can expand opportunities for everyone, and create thriving communities in every single state of the nation.
Thank you LIUNA. Thank you, my union brothers and sisters, for helping to lead these efforts.
It was my honor to be with you this morning. We have work to do. Let’s continue to fight. Fight. Fight.