The National African American Caucus of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is committed to enhancing opportunities for education, training mentorship, leadership development and networking for SEIU members and staff of African descent.
We further engage to promote social, economic and political justice within our workplace, our communities, our nation and within our union. We shall further encourage our members to actively engage in efforts to organize the unorganized and to fully participate in the development and implementation of labor’s political agenda and programs.
SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW) AFRAM Caucus take our work and the mission of our union membership to heart. We see a problem and collectively, work to find resolutions which can disentangle, decipher, and get to the bottom of an issue.
AFRAM members can find pride in knowing that every decision outcome set forth through our SEIU UHW Caucus, is a joint effort engaging each member that unites more than 100,000 employees who work in hospitals and clinics across California. Member participation and leadership are the keys to our strength within AFRAM.
We encourage members to become involved in union activities, fill leadership roles in our union, and take advantage of available trainings that give them the tools necessary to lead our fight for a better future.
That is the question that deserves an honest, thoughtful answer. Union members benefit from universal empowerment under the SEIU umbrella. Within SEIU UHW, AFRAM caucus members can focus on specifics and concerns which are directly related to their ethos, the African American community and the diverse African Diaspora.
History has shown that there once was a time when African Americans weren’t treated as fairly and justly within the union structure and hierarchy. Thus, the formation of AFRAM was instituted (and, I must add, with opposition) and the birth of the caucus was established.
Whereas, times have changed, and, because of AFRAM, many caucuses have been introduced within SEIU, the value of what caucuses bring to the table is irrefutable and undoubtedly substantial. AFRAM led the way for every caucus established in SEIU today!
The AFRAM membership pledges to always pay homage to those who came before us and paved the way for our people. We could not be where we are without embracing who we are. We thank the founders and the leaders who, with resounding fortitude, kept our voices in critical and necessary conversations over decades.
Present day, our work continues to be cut out for us. We understand that although some struggles vary from year to year, deeply rooted biases still exist and the presumption that all is well is a lie. That is one of the reasons why AFRAM is for Americans of color, but not limited to Americans of color. If we wish to be effective, we cannot live in our silos alone. That’s not how the world operates.
AFRAM is here to teach EVERYONE the contributions of African Americans and our rich history in our country…and our union. We are also here to continue the legacy and the importance of being able to address the issues of our union members and the African American culture. In SEIU UHW’s fight for Healthcare Justice, we cannot ignore that there will never be Healthcare Justice without Racial Justice. Our union is the platform for AFRAM to educate, empower, engage and elevate our members to that end.
So, why join AFRAM? We believe the answer is because you want to be a part of a group of folks who take our work and the mission of our union membership to heart. We see a problem and collectively, we can seek to find resolutions which can disentangle, decipher, and get to the bottom of an issue. AFRAM members can find pride in knowing that every decision outcome set forth through our SEIU UHW Caucus, is a joint effort engaging each member.
AFRAM is not here to save the world. We are not here to engage in every fight, nor have an answer to every issue. However, we can look at the landscape and find those areas where we will have the most impact, one challenge at a time.
AFRAM is an enigma of sorts. We don’t strive to have hundreds of members just to show the numbers. That’s not what we are about. We want real members who are pro-active, real thinkers, real activists, and real partners who understand what’s needed to break down barriers, obstacles, and difficult situations. SEIU UHW AFRAM’s future depends on us.
Talk is cheap. Doing is better. AFRAM members know that doing takes energy and, at times, can be sacrificial. What we do today, will carry on into tomorrow. These are just a few of the reasons why SEIU members should join the African American caucus called AFRAM for short.
If you are that person, we invite you to come and join us! Think of your $20 annual membership as planting more seeds in the garden so we can continue to harvest our incredible work from the roots of our majestic African American history.
If you are not a member of SEIU-UHW, you will need to join the Healthcare Justice division as a member before joining the AFRAM Caucus.
UHW champions for Healthcare Justice, as part of that charge UHW has been working to collect data from the state particularly on racial disparities around maternal health in CA facilities. The work on this data is largely complete and we are now transitioning to working on a campaign based on data received. What does this look like for UHW? We have interesting data but what do we do with it? There are many black women women organizations that have been leading this type of work for a long time, We want to figure out how we can support and collaborate without disrupting the good work already being done. Conversations we've had have included black women doctors who are advocates, the Fresno based organization Black Wellness and Prosperity Center, California Preterm Birth Initiative, and the San Francisco human rights commission.
Many of our members are affected by this personally and professionally and we want to hear from them, African American women, women of color and our AFRAM Caucus members. We are looking for members to lead on this. We are looking to form a committee of members who can stay updated about this, give feedback and opinions with the time commitment of possibly bi-weekly or monthly update calls. We would also like to have a couple of members who are willing to come to occasional meetings with external organizations as well and take more of a leadership role. Please take time to fill out our survey which will give you an opportunity to tell your experiences around Black Maternal Health as a patient, a healthcare worker, friend or family member.
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Contact your area AFRAM Officer to purchase one of our AFRAM hoodies. Hoodies com in the Throwback and current Logo styles.
February 2022 UHW-AFRAM hosted a Black History Month Fireside Chat with Assembly members Kevin McCarty and Isaac Bryan of the California Legislative Black Caucus and Special guest Secretary Of State Dr. Shirley Weber to discuss the CLBC's 2022 legislative priorities.
During Black History Month 2021, AFRAM hosted an event that focused on various aspects of Black Health. In this episode, we focused on Black Mental Health and was joined by Dr. Joi K. Madison and Healthcare Justice Member, Gary Williams. Joi Madison was raised in South Central Los Angeles and a “citizen of the globe,” Joi K. Madison, international coach and speaker, has facilitated workshops and supported clients spanning four continents. Workshop topics include trauma-informed emotional intelligence, communication and boundaries for healthy relationships, healing your relationship with money through social-cultural understanding and more. Gary Williams is an SEIU UHW Healthcare Justice Member who discussed Black mental health for men – the realities and the recommendations from the perspective of Black males.
Yusef Miller shared with the AFRAM Black Health Expo his “why” for receiving the Covid 19 Vaccine, the history of vaccines in the Black community, and the devastating disproportionate effects Covid is having on communities of color. Yusef Miller is the founder of Mosques Against Trafficking, Co-Founder of The North County Equity & Justice Coalition, Member of the Racial Justice Coalition of San Diego, Member of East County Justice Coalition, Board Member of Activist San Diego, and Board Member of the Islamic Society of North County (Escondido Musullah)
Our 2020 Black History Month Gospel Celebration was filled with joyful noise and praise. Here is your chance to enjoy the musical selections if you missed it, or be blessed with an encore. Vocalists - Brenda Jeff, Wanda Diamond, Doris Bumpus Musicians - Joe Bumpus (organ), Joey Bumpus Jr. (drums) Pastor- Reverend Earl Ward of Star Bethel Baptist Church Venue- Star Bethel Baptist Church, Oakland CA
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