FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Miami, FL — On Oct. 27, a broad coalition of progressive groups, immigrant advocates and labor unions announced they have knocked on more than one million doors across Florida. In partnership with FLIC Votes, Organize Now, New Florida Majority, Florida’s Voice and Faith in Florida, and alongside SEIU Florida, 1199SEIU, 32BJ SEIU, SEIU Florida Public Services Union and SEIU Local 1991, the United We Can coalition has launched a new political movement that promises to be a powerhouse in future elections on all levels, from city councils to the White House.
"With only days left until the election, we are thrilled to be part of a movement that stands up for Black and Latino working class communities," said Stephanie Porta, executive director of Organize Now. "Our grassroots movement has built leaders across the state that ensures long-term power for those communities. With each face-to-face conversation held at the door, we are taking action into our own hands to make our country better and ensuring victory for those candidates who share our own values and are willing to fight for our communities."
United We Can has supported candidates who have proven themselves as champions committed to $15 an hour and union rights, affordable child care for all Americans, addressing the lasting impact of racism toward Black America, common sense immigration reform, empowering Latino communities for equal opportunities, debt-free college, action on climate change and quality long-term care for seniors and people with disabilities, as well as amendments and initiatives that will have a real impact on a statewide and local level. Alongside its robust canvassing operation, United We Can has focused on recruiting and training new grassroots leaders in communities across the state. SEIU Florida and allies such as PICO National Network, Faith in Florida, FLIC Votes, Organize Now and New Florida Majority have also invested more than half a million in radio and digital ads targeting Latino, Haitian and African American voters.
“During this campaign, we have stood up and fought together for our families, our children and our communities,” said Alphonso Mayfield, SEIU’s State Director for the 2016 Election Campaign. “We have joined a statewide coalition of community members, activists and advocacy groups fighting to create the kind of Florida we want to live in. And we are winning. Together, we have knocked on one million doors. A million households across the state have been informed, inspired and encouraged to take back their power and vote. We are a movement, with new leaders joining us daily as our collective power is amplified through our unified voices. This movement does not end on Election Day. We will continue to mobilize Florida and hold elected officials accountable."
By Monday, the start of early voting, 99 percent more Latinos had already voted by mail than in 2012, an unprecedented number. That number could not have been achieved without SEIU Florida members, allies and partners, who have been making phone calls and knocking on doors in unprecedented numbers in regions across the state, specifically targeting Latino, African American, Caribbean and working class communities, which have historically had low voter turnout. United We Can’s statewide coalition has been fighting to turn that around, amplifying the strength that comes from working together and sharing resources. The results have already proven the coalition’s power through unity, with turnout surging in counties targeted by the campaign.
SEIU Florida represents over 55,000 active and retired healthcare professionals, public employees and property service workers in the state of Florida. SEIU members provide vital public services in Florida’s hospitals, nursing homes, public schools, community colleges, municipal and county governments, malls, and universities. With over 2.1 million members, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in North America.