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April Verrett elected President of SEIU

Verrett, SEIU’s first Black president, will keynote the WSLC Convention in July


PHILADELPHIA, PA (May 21, 2024) — The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) elected April Verrett as President on the first day of the 2024 SEIU convention. Verrett succeeds retiring president Mary Kay Henry, the first woman to lead the union. Verrett represents another first for SEIU, as the union’s first Black president. Along with Secretary Treasurer Rocío Sáenz, SEIU will have two women of color at the helm, a first for an International Union in the United States. 

SEIU represents about 2 million members in healthcare, the public sector and property services, including tens of thousands of workers across Washington State. Largely women and people of color, SEIU is made up of a diverse array of working people, including many immigrant and first generation workers. 

Verrett has deep roots in the union that date back to childhood. She was raised by her grandmother, a Union Steward for SEIU Local 46. As an adult, Verrett has dedicated her life to the labor movement. 

As President of SEIU Local 2015, California’s largest local union, and the nation’s largest long-term care union, she fought on behalf of more than 400,000 long-term care providers working in both nursing homes and private homes throughout California. She has also served as Executive Vice President of SEIU Healthcare Illinois and Indiana (HCII), where she played an instrumental role in holding corporations accountable and advocating for them to pay their fair share in taxes. 

President April Verrett is sworn in by retiring President Mary Kay Henry. Photo courtesy of SEIU.

Verrett has served as Secretary-Treasurer of SEIU for the past two years, leading the union’s strategic planning process. At SEIU Verrett has also chaired the union’s National Home Care Council, co-chaired the National Organizing Committee, and served as a member of the Finance Committee.

While SEIU is not affiliated with the AFL-CIO at the national level, many SEIU locals are affiliated with state labor councils, and work in tandem with AFL-CIO affiliated unions to build power for working people. In Washington, SEIU 6, SEIU 775, SEIU Healthcare 1199NW, and SEIU-CIR are all affiliates of the WSLC, AFL-CIO and along with SEIU 925, long-time partners growing worker power on the job, in the streets, and in the halls of power. 

Verrett will be keynoting at the 2024 WSLC Constitutional Convention in July, where delegates from WSLC affiliated unions will gather to share our successes, learn new tactics to grow worker power, and vote on resolutions that will guide the work of the WSLC. 

“President Verrett’s clear-eyed vision for an anti-racist, fighting labor movement is an inspiration,” said WSLC President April Sims. “Washington’s labor movement is excited to welcome her to our Convention in July and learn from this powerful labor leader.” 

The 2024 WSLC Convention runs from July 16 through July 18 in Wenatchee, convening under the theme, “Reclaiming Worker Power, Energizing our Movement.” Registration opens in June, and all members of affiliated unions are encouraged to contact their local union for steps to attend Convention as a delegate. 

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