March 18, 2013
Washington, DC—The National Consumers League, America’s pioneering consumer organization, applauds President Obama’s nomination of Tom Perez to serve as Labor Secretary. Perez is a longtime champion of civil rights and spent his career advocating for working families. Perez currently serves as head of the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice but had previously served as labor secretary for the state of Maryland. Perez is an advocate of immigration reform, as well, sitting on the board of Casa de Maryland, a group that provides day labor centers. Perez is himself the son of Dominican immigrants. NCL’s Board of Directors recently adopted policy in support of immigration reform because immigrants are so often exploited both as consumers and workers.
The position of Secretary of Labor is critically important in overseeing the health and safety of workers through OSHA, protections provided by the Department’s the Wage and Hour Division, and ensuring there are sufficient inspectors to uncover violations of laws and regulations on child labor. The Secretary of Labor also uses the bully pulpit to highlight rights and protections afforded to workers, and encourages cooperation and collaboration between unions and management. NCL has recognized the important work of Secretaries of labor by given the organization’s Trumpeter Award to several former secretaries, including Robert Reich and Hilda Solis.
“NCL welcomes the nomination of Tom Perez, a champion of working people, to the position of Secretary of Labor and we look forward to working with him on a host of issues, including preventing exploitation of all children and teens who work, and especially farmworker children, and protecting particularly low income workers from wage theft abuses,” said NCL Executive Director Sally Greenberg.
“The Senate should move quickly to confirm this qualified nominee. We look forward to working with Perez to further build and protect the rights that are so integral to maintaining a vibrant American workforce,” said Greenberg.
About the National Consumers League
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization. Our mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.