PRESS RELEASE from Washington State SEIU

Washington State SEIU Endorses Obama
State's Largest Union Joins Obama's Movement for Change

Today [Feb. 5], Washington State SEIU announced its endorsement of Senator Barack Obama. Washington State SEIU, the largest union in the state with over 100,000 members who previously endorsed Senator John Edwards, has now chosen to mobilize its members to support Obama. The Washington State SEIU cited Obama as the only candidate who can unite people to bring the fundamental change our health care system needs.

Senator Obama said, "I am proud to accept the endorsement of the Washington State SEIU, and together we will provide affordable, quality health care for every single American. Washington State families deserve to know that we will end the game playing in Washington and unite all of us to change the way the health care system works so that every single American has the coverage they need."

"The last eight years have been a disaster for working families," said SEIU Healthcare 775NW President David Rolf. "We need to bring fundamental change to Washington DC on issues like health care, tax fairness, and immigration, and Senator Obama is the candidate who can make that happen."

"We know that Barack Obama stands with and for working people because in Illinois he acted to help raise child care workers out of poverty and improve the quality of care for children," said Kim Cook, SEIU 925 President. "He supported a movement of child care workers that has spread to Washington State and across the country."

"Now, more than ever, we need a candidate who can bring change to our country, deliver needed health care reform, and help working families," said Diane Sosne, RN, president of SEIU Healthcare 1199NW. "Barack Obama is the candidate who can unite America."

"SEIU Local 6 represents janitors, security guards and other building service officers across our state most of whom are barely able to make ends meet," said SEIU Local 6 President Sergio Salinas. "We are convinced that Barack Obama is the candidate best able to represent the interests of our hard working families."

SEIU represents 100,000 health care, long-term care, education, child care, and building service workers throughout Washington State. It is the state's largest, most diverse, and most politically active union. The union will be making tens of thousands of phone calls over the next few days to encourage members to attend the Democratic caucuses on Saturday.

SEIU Locals in Washington State include:

SEIU Local 6 representing 3500 janitors and security guards
SEIU Local 49 representing 1200 health care workers in SW Washington
SEIU Healthcare 775NW representing 33,000 long-term care workers
SEIU 925 representing 23,000 education and child care workers
SEIU Healthcare 1199NW representing 22,000 nurses and health care workers
SEIU Local 1948 representing 27,000 school employees