Press Release | Health Care

AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler to Speak at Care Workers Can’t Wait Summit, Amplify the Call for Greater Investment in Care

As working families continue to amplify the call for overdue investment in America’s broken care economy, today the AFL-CIO announced that AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler will stand in solidarity with hundreds of care workers at the first-ever Care Workers Can’t Wait Summit. The summit, slated for April 18-19, takes place on the heels of the Biden-Harris administration’s recent announcement proclaiming April 2023 as Care Workers Recognition Month. Hundreds of care workers and caregivers will gather in Washington, D.C., to raise their collective voice and demand greater investment in the care workforce. The summit is jointly hosted by the National Domestic Workers Alliance; AFL-CIO; American Federation of Teachers; Service Employees International Union; American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees; Community Change; Care in Action; and Care Can’t Wait. 

“We must strengthen our care workforce and deliver real solutions for working families,” said President Shuler. “Care jobs are extremely demanding and require an incredible amount of skill and compassion, but this work continues to be undervalued and overlooked. Care workers and caregivers receive little support, and far too many can barely make ends meet or care for their own families. This is unacceptable and it’s been past time for change. We will continue to fight to ensure that care jobs are good union jobs with good wages, strong benefits and basic safety protections; that all working families have access to quality, affordable care for our children, seniors and people with disabilities; and that paid family and medical leave is guaranteed.”

The care workforce, which is disproportionately made up of women of color, has long been underpaid and misclassified, and many are without a union. Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, care providers were stretched thin. The public health crisis only exacerbated these challenges and hundreds of care workers have left the industry. Care prices have also skyrocketed, straining working families and forcing them to spend a significant portion of their income on services. The labor movement is helping to lead the charge to transform the care economy and ensure the long-term resilience and security of our nation.  

The Care Workers Can’t Wait Summit will feature panel discussions, remarks and testimonials from care workers, union leaders, lawmakers and advocates as they explore the dire state of the care economy and the impact it has had on the well-being of working families. Topics will include the importance of unions and organizing in transforming care jobs into family-sustaining careers with good wages and benefits; the daily experiences and challenges of care work; how we can better support family caregivers; and the path forward for strengthening the care economy. 

Confirmed speakers include actress Morena Baccarin as well as several members of Congress including Senator Tammy Duckworth, Democratic Whip Katherine Clark, and Representatives Angie Craig, Jimmy Gomez, Pramila Jayapal, Jan Schakowsky, and Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

To learn more about the event, please click here.

Contact: Danielle Noel, 202-637-5018