Published: October 10, 2018


Last month we announced a bold, new plan called the Care Agenda. If you haven’t seen it, make sure to check out the announcement.

Here’s the quick version of what we hope to accomplish:

  1. Make all caregiving jobs are good jobs. That means a fair wage, benefits, and opportunities for advancement.
  2. Everyone who needs care or support services gets it. No one gets left behind.
  3. Tackle a range of other issues from affordable day care to affordable housing – all of which help accomplish our first two goals.  

In order to win on the Care Agenda, we need to pass several laws through the State Legislature, and while that may sound like a monumental task, the truth is SEIU members and CareWorks activists have a long track record of raising wages and improving services this way. It all starts with electing a Governor and State Legislature that will support our agenda.

“As member of the SEIU 503 Board of Directors, I will lead care providers and consumers in a bold new agenda to improve our jobs and make sure no one who needs services gets left behind.”

~ Natalie Jackson, child care provider


Here’s a look at the key races to watch in November.

Re-electing Governor Kate Brown

With the power of the veto, the Governor has the ability to set the agenda in the State Legislature. That means the Care Agenda hinges on who holds the veto pen.

SEIU members endorsed Governor Kate Brown because she has a long record of fighting with us. Governor Brown understands that homecare, personal support, and other caregiving jobs are part of the healthcare industry. Here’s what she had to say about it in her 2018 State of The State speech:

“One of our largest growing industries is healthcare. Those training to enter the field should have fewer hoops to jump through and a wider range of opportunities to earn a good wage to support their families … I will work to better align training and requirements for entry-level jobs in health care, in-home care, and community-based health to ensure that there is a ladder to a career for people gaining skills in caregiving.”

Governor Brown fought to protect Medicaid funding, passed laws protecting homecare workers from predatory non-compete contracts, helped improve the state’s training program, and has always supported homecare workers’ right to join a union. She’s the best candidate to help us win the Care Agenda.


Key State Legislative Races

In order to do something big, you need champions. Two legislators who have been true champions for Oregon’s care providers are Senator Sara Gelser and Representative Alissa Keny-Guyer. Both hold key committee positions that put them in a position to advance our agenda.

You can find more information about Senator Sara Gelser here and Representative Alissa Keny-Guyer here.

In addition, we also have to win across the board to ensure we have enough votes on our side. Three candidates who may hold the key are Rachel Prusak in House District 37 (West Linn/Tualitin), Anna Williams in House District 52 (Hood River) and Chrissy Reitz in Senate District 26 (Hood River/Mt. Hood/Gorge).

Our path to winning on the Care Agenda starts with these key campaigns.

Governor Kate Brown
Sen Sara Gelser
Rep Alissa Keny-Guyer
Rachel Prusak for State Rep
Anna Williams for State Rep
Chrissy Reitz for State Senate


We’ll make sure to keep you informed about opportunities to get involved in these campaigns, and how we can push these leaders to advance our agenda in the months following the election.

Click here to see the full Care Agenda and more information about our plan to win.

I Support The Care Agenda

Organizations who wish to join us in supporting one or more of the bills that are part of the 2019 Care Agenda are encouraged to sign on as an Organizational Supporter. Each organization can decide on the type of participation that best fits their organizational interest and capacity.
  • Endorsing the Care Agenda means being a public supporter of one or more bills and allowing SEIU 503 to include your organization's name on materials and this website. We hope endorsers will help promote legislation and campaign activities by sharing information with members by email, on organizational websites and social media. 
  • Participating in the Care Agenda means joining campaign activities such as Care Power Lobby Day(s) and other events, engaging supporters as volunteers for our campaign, co-sponsoring public events, helping to recruit other endorsing organizations.