One of the state’s largest unions — SEIU Florida — has announced endorsements for candidates running to represent Tampa Bay for the 2022 election cycle.
The organization, which represents more than 80,000 workers statewide, released the early endorsements in honor of International Workers Memorial Day. SEIU Florida advocates for issues involving worker rights, local democracy, conditions in the workplace, increased access to quality and affordable health care, and corporate accountability and tax reform.
“As we honor Workers Memorial Day, we are reminded of the importance of advocating for working Floridians and the significance of safe working conditions,” said Martha Baker, president of SEIU Florida’s State Council.
“So many hardworking Floridians endure brutal conditions, putting their bodies and lives on the line to provide for their families and serve our communities. We are proud to show our support for these candidates who have continually stepped up for the working people of Florida.”
SEIU Florida’s endorsements for the Tampa Bay region include congressional candidates and local races, with all supported candidates being Democrats.
In Hillsborough County, the organization is backing U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor as she runs for re-election for Florida’s 14th Congressional District. The union is also backing incumbent state Sen. Janet Cruz, as well as Reps. Fentrice Driskell, Dianne Hart and Susan Valdes.
Hillsborough County Commissioners Harry Cohen, Kimberly Overman and Mariella Smith also earned endorsements from SEIU Florida.
“We need elected officials who will honestly address the real issues affecting everyday Floridians, such as affordable housing, fair wages, and access to quality, affordable health care,” said Roxey Nelson, vice president of SEIU Florida’s State Council. “Florida deserves leaders who will invest in improving the quality of life for all, regardless of race, gender, job title, zip code or party affiliation.”
In Pinellas County, the union announced support for three local candidates, who are all seeking re-election — Pinellas County Commissioners Rene Flowers and Pat Gerard, and Pinellas County School Board member Caprice Edmond.