Faces of Labor: Working People Standing Together
About the Faces of Labor Project
Union members are our neighbors, our friends, and our family. For decades attacks on labor have glossed over the workers who make up a union. In the weeks leading up to Labor Day, we're going to spotlight union workers to remind folks what a union really is: workers standing together.
Below are links to the Faces of Labor posts on Facebook celebrating workers all over California. You can also read our Labor's Edge blog post on Faces of Labor here.
How to participate
A Faces of Labor post should include a photograph of 1-2 worker(s) in California accompanied by a quote about their life and/or work. Feel free to post your own to social media and use the hashtag #FacesOfLabor (on either Facebook or Twitter) so we can find and share it!
If you would like to submit a post for consideration to the California Labor Federation, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for guidelines.
Be sure to sure to follow the California Labor Federation on Facebook to see future #FacesOfLabor posts!
Faces of Labor Posts
Learn more about the workers we have spotlighted on Facebook:
“I think the toughest part of returning to civilian life was overcoming the fear of the unknown and losing that guaranteed paycheck. As a civilian, you have immeasurable freedom; it’s enough to make a grown man cry.”
Read more about Walter's story here
“My wife had a baby 5 months ago, she had surgery and couldn’t move much, this was during a strike we were having at my workplace, I’m a port truck driver. Fortunately my coworkers helped me find a person to babysit so I could participate in the strike. We are asking the trucking companies to reclassify us as employees so we can get labor rights and end wage theft. We are employees.”
Port Truck Driver #FacesOfLabor
“Animals can't speak for themselves, but I know they are grateful. Always. Even when I find animals in the worst circumstances, I can see it in their eyes when I help them. They are telling me 'Thank you.'”
“I have been part of a union most of my adult life. The heart of the union is in direct alignment with true soul of being an American: cooperation, solidarity, comradeship. They are the foundations that formed the spirit of American accomplishment.”
“This fight is about more than my illegal firing: it's about respect for all workers and basic protections on the job. The ability to take sick leave when we or a family member is ill; a fair wage that reflects our contribution to the company’s giant profits; and guaranteed full-time hours for those willing to work.”
Anita Peni Brogdon
“Many people who don’t have disabled kids or loved ones may not understand. But I know that I am truly blessed to have Vanessa, and thankful that I can care for her at home. I’m afraid for what would happen to her if she were forced to live in an institution or nursing home. My daughter Vanessa is 41 years old, but it wasn’t until 15 years ago that we learned about IHSS. I’ve been her 24/7 care provider since she was born. California’s In-Home Supportive Services program ensures that Vanessa can stay at home with me, and that I can put food on the table for our family. This has been especially important for us since my husband passed away a few years ago. I don’t know what we would do without homecare.”
~Anita Peni Brogdon
“Before I joined the union, I worked two jobs — eight hours in the morning as a gardener and then at night as a janitor. It was exhausting. I stood with my co-workers and fought for a union in 2001. We were able to secure full time employment and benefits, which gave me the opportunity to work full time as a janitor. I stay engaged in my union because I wholeheartedly believe unions raise standards for everyone and together hold corporations accountable for making billions at the expense of exploiting working families.”
“I am the first line of communication with folks when they come to the hospital. I love my job and work hard to provide the best service I can to people in my community during their most dire circumstances. They deserve it.”
~Rodney C. Gilmore,
Switchboard Operator at Highland Hospital in Oakland and proud union member of SEIU Local 1021. #FacesOfLabor
“Unions have broken the glass ceiling for women in construction – regardless of our gender, we all get paid the same amount for the same level of training and expertise.”
Proud union member of IBEW Local 569 in San Diego. #FacesOfLabor
“When my daughter Emma was born premature, the doctors gave her 30 days to live. She is deaf, legally blind, has a seizure disorder, and Cerebral Palsy. She has been fed from a tube since the day she was born. But today, 13 years after the doctors gave her a month to live, Emma is alive and well. My daughter has survived and even thrived through love and caring in the home thanks to In-Home Supportive Services and my work as her care provider.”
Homecare provider and proud union member of UDW Homecare Providers Union in Riverside. #FacesOfLabor
“I spend my days making sure water in Sonoma County is safe for folks to drink. I was recently priced out of living in Sonoma County so I drive two and a half hours to work every day. I take pride in my work, I just wish I could spend more time with my family and less time on the road.”
Proud Union Member of SEIU Local 1021 on trying to make it work when housing prices soar. #FacesOfLabor