Published: March 1, 2023

By: Executive Director Melissa Unger and President Mike Powers 

As we begin Women’s History Month 2023, we are at a moment where women continue to make gains but there have also been major setbacks to women’s rights. Today you are more likely to see a woman as CEO or in a board room than ever before, but there are many ways that women’s rights continue to be threatened. 

The Supreme Court overruled Roe v. Wade, an unprecedented decision taking away a guaranteed constitutional right, allowing states to outlaw a woman’s right to choose. While women are paid less than men, Black, Latina, Indigenous, and Pacific Islander women are paid less than white women –as they face both racism and sexism. Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women continue to lack justice. Women have been subject to harassment and violence amid a spike in hate crimes targeting Asian people. Attacks on trans women and laws discriminating against them are on the rise across our nation.  

In the face of all of this, SEIU 503 is firmly united with every woman, and we will continue to push to make sure that all women have a fair and equal playing field to succeed. As union members, we know that there is power in solidarity. No matter what is going on in the world, we will not be divided.  

We know that women are strong and form the backbone of organized labor, including our union. Whether it’s our Board of Directors, bargaining tables, or worksites, women are in positions of power. Over the course of the month, we will uplift and celebrate those who came before and the women who are leading today. We’re opening our Women’s History Month celebration with this quote from bell hooks: 

“Hope is essential to any political struggle for radical change when the overall social climate promotes disillusionment and despair.”