September 17, 2021
Albany, NY

Video, Audio, Photos & Rush Transcript: Governor Hochul Joins SEIU 32BJ Leadership to Highlight Recently Signed Legislation to Increase Wages for Essential Service Workers

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Video, Audio, Photos & Rush Transcript: Governor Hochul Joins SEIU 32BJ Leadership to Highlight Recently Signed Legislation to Increase Wages for Essential Service Workers
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Governor Hochul: "I'm sorry you don't get the recognition that I think you deserve, but I'm here today to say you have it from me and 20 million New Yorkers who appreciate what 32BJ does every single day, especially what you went through during this pandemic, my friends. This is a bad nightmare that no one wants to repeat, but you were there at a time when a lot of people said, no, I'll just stay home and work on my computer today, I'm not going to the office, you showed up. You showed up at every corner of this state and this community to do your jobs. And you did it with such courage. You never were fearful. You just knew you had something to do and you showed up. And for that, just by showing up, I will always be grateful."

Governor Hochul: "We're just beginning, my friends, we're just getting warmed up. We're going to let people know that the most unionized state in America is proud of that. We're going to increase our ranks and increase the influence of labor unions because under my watch, we're going to do even more for the great men and women of the state."

Earlier today, Governor Kathy Hochul joined SEIU 32BJ to highlight recently signed legislation to increase wages for essential service workers with Lieutenant Governor Brian Benjamin.

VIDEO of the event is available on YouTube here and in TV quality (h.264, mp4) format here.

AUDIO of the event is available here.

PHOTOS of the event are available on the Governor's Flickr page.

A rush transcript of the Governor's remarks is available below:

Well, I'm having a great time. You all having a great time. I love the energy that's here. The excitement, the passion. First of all, congratulations to our great leader, Kyle Bragg, on your reelection. I always like elections. I like reelections even better. So, congratulations. To all my partners in government, just want to thank everyone who's here. I see Brad Hoylman and Dick Gottfried and Carmen De La Rosa. Thank you for being a champion of this and our legislature and Linda Rosenthal. Of course Gale Brewer is here, Roberta Reardon.

Is there someone like a lieutenant governor around here, too? This is my guy. He's keeping me so busy signing all of his bills, because I know I'm going to hear about if I don't. But he's a tremendous partner, our great former Senator, now Lieutenant Governor Brian Benjamin.

To all of you, all of you. I also want to thank our Speaker Carl Heastie, for being with me this morning, as well as this afternoon, when we do some really important work for the people of New York. Great, great partners.

I'm sorry I had to sign this in Buffalo a few weeks ago. I was looking, I was in search of a Labor Day parade. We didn't have a parade because of COVID, but we're back next year, right? We'll come back next year. So I went to Buffalo to the same neighborhood where my immigrant grandparent came and only had good jobs because they were part of the union movement. And I will never forget what labor unions did for my family, lifting them out of extreme poverty and living in trailer parks. And like so many others who've come to this country in search of a better life, the labor union movement helped elevate all of us and an entire family and generations.

Ultimately, I will never forget what that did for me personally. So when it comes to an opportunity like this, Roberta Reardon was with me in Buffalo when we did this, for me to just literally pick up the pen and say, with that statement I'm signing this right now because you matter, the state of New York has your back and we're going to continue to fight for the working men and women of this state together, I'll continue doing that.

I also asked the question, my friends from 32BJ, especially the 2,000 workers who are in our buildings, taking care of people of great means, how nice is that? You're the door people, you're the cleaning people, the support staff. You are the ones who make this city happen. Let's never forget your contributions every single day.

I'm sorry you don't get the recognition that I think you deserve, but I'm here today to say you have it from me and 20 million New Yorkers who appreciate what 32BJ does every single day, especially what you went through during this pandemic, my friends. This is a bad nightmare that no one wants to repeat, but you were there at a time when a lot of people said, no, I'll just stay home and work on my computer today, I'm not going to the office, you showed up. You showed up at every corner of this state and this community to do your jobs. And you did it with such courage. You never were fearful. You just knew you had something to do and you showed up. And for that, just by showing up, I will always be grateful.

That's another reason why I passed the HERO Act. We signed the HERO Act into law to make sure that the workspace is safe for of you. To make sure that you get more than a living wage, that prevailing wage, the salaries that lift you up by fifty percent. That was long overdue. I'm so glad we were able to accomplish that. And I'm delighted to be here to celebrate this.

We're just beginning, my friends, we're just getting warmed up. We're going to let people know that the most unionized state in America is proud of that. We're going to increase our ranks and increase the influence of labor unions because under my watch, we're going to do even more for the great men and women of the state.

I'm so grateful for all of you here today. My great partner, Brian Benjamin, is going to continue to speak on my behalf today. I do have to run, but I also want to recognize Jerry Nadler. Our great Congressman is here. Let's give it up. Thank you, my friends. Let's keep it going. I've got a lot of pens, a lot of signing I'm going to keep doing and let's keep the good times rolling here.

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