Presidential Candidate Bill Richardson Walks in the Shoes of Las Vegas Family Services Worker
Las Vegas —Governor Richardson became the latest presidential candidate to experience first hand what life is like for working people today by walking in the shoes of SEIU member Mark Fitzgerald. His time with Fitzgerald began with an early morning breakfast with his family and continued with a home visit and time at the Clark County Department of Family Services.
Fitzgerald, a member of SEIU Local 1107, has worked in family and youth services for 23 years, first as a social worker investigating child abuse allegations and then as a case worker investigating and monitoring injuries, deaths, and mental health issues involving children four and under. A single dad, he adopted his 17 year old at the age of four and has been a foster father just as long, currently caring for a two year old.
“Every day I go home worried if we made the right decisions about removing children from or reuniting them with their families,” said Fitzgerald. “Those are hard decisions, but as a single dad, I know how important it is for kids to get the care and support they need. After today, I hope Governor Richardson has a better understanding of what it takes to be a single parent and a worker trying to give kids a better future.”
“When you are a single parent like Mark,your work is far from over when you pull into your driveway after a long day on the job,” said SEIU Secretary-Treasurer Anna Burger. “Presidential candidates need to understand what working people like Mark face each day.There’s no better way than by walking a day in his shoes.”
SEIU members are inviting all candidates for president to experience first hand what their lives are like by spending time in their homes and at their jobs. Senators Biden, Clinton, Dodd, and Obama have all accepted the invitation. Senator Edwards has already spent a day with a nursing assistant in New York.
Visit www.WalkADayInMyShoes2008.com to learn more about the Walk A Day In My Shoes program.
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With 1.8 million members, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in North America. Focused on uniting workers in three sectors to improve their lives and the services they provide, SEIU is the largest health care union, including hospitals, nursing homes, and home care; the largest property services union, including building cleaning and security; and the second largest public employee union.