GST Reap, IVP Cavey attend Su DOL nomination event

General Secretary-Treasurer Robert W. Reap and Middle Atlantic States Conference International Vice President Brian S. Cavey joined other union leaders at the White House on March 1 as President Joe Biden officially nominated Julie Su to be the next U.S. Department of Labor Secretary.

Su worked as the Deputy Labor Secretary under previous Secretary Marty Walsh, until he stepped down to accept an offer to become the Executive Director of the NHL Players’ Association. She is serving as the interim Labor Secretary until her confirmation hearings are completed.

“The International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers is proud to endorse President Biden’s nomination of Julie Su as the next Secretary of Labor,” said Reap. “Her appointment continues to demonstrate President Biden’s commitment to being the pro-worker administration that is solidifying the foundation upon which our economy can grow, and all citizens can share its prosperity.”

During his nomination speech,  Biden called Su a fighter for the working class. 

"Julie spent two decades representing workers  many without college degrees, many who didn't speak English but who worked long, long hours at low pay and were just looking for a little bit of dignity just a little bit of dignity for themselves and their families," he said.

For Su, the nomination will allow her to continue to fight for all workers.

“When the President talks about those who’ve been forgotten or invisible, I know what he means because I  have spent my career fighting for them to be seen,” said  Su. “So, to all workers who are toiling in the shadows, to  workers who are organizing for power and respect in the  workplace, know that we see you, we stand with you, and  we will fight for you.” 

Following the nomination event, both Reap and Cavey had the opportunity to meet and speak with Biden, Su and other dignitaries at the event. Among the other union leaders at the event were AFL-CIO President Liz Schuler, North America’s Building Trades Unions President Sean McGarvey and Walsh.

Su won confirmation as Deputy Secretary in 2021 by a 50-47 party-line vote and, based on the makeup of the  Senate, will see another close vote.

Prior to working for the Biden administration, Su served as Labor Secretary for the State of California, where she worked closely with unions and employers to build high-road training partnerships to connect people to good, union jobs.  

Su began her life in government service as the  California Labor Commissioner, where she launched the  “Wage Theft is a Crime” campaign with the support of both labor and management. 

Prior to that, she spent 17 years as a civil rights attorney and represented workers, including 72 Thai garment workers, who were trafficked into the U.S. and forced to work behind barbed wire and under armed guard.

This work earned her a MacArthur “Genius” Award.

A graduate of Stanford University and Harvard Law School, Su is the daughter of immigrants. She speaks Mandarin and Spanish and has two daughters, who are both in college.

"We are confident that she will continue the work she began while serving beside Secretary Marty Walsh and protecting the rights of all working women and men," said Reap. "The members of the Insulators Union appreciate all that Julie Su has done for labor and strongly support her confirmation as Secretary of Labor."


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