March 1, 2023
Media contact: National Consumers League – Katie Brown, email@example.com, 202-823-8442
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The National Consumers League welcomes President Biden’s announcement that he intends to nominate Julie Su to serve as Secretary of the Department of Labor. Su is an experienced labor expert who can continue the Administration’s commitment to a stronger, more resilient, and more inclusive economy for all Americans. She has been serving as Deputy Secretary of Labor since July 2021. As Deputy Secretary, Su has worked with Secretary Walsh to advance President Biden’s vision of a strong, resilient, inclusive economy with worker well-being at its center.
Under Walsh and Su’s leadership, the Department of Labor has witnessed an increase of more than 12 million jobs and the unemployment rate has inched down to 3.4 percent, the lowest rate since May of 1969.
Su previously led California’s Labor and Workforce Development Agency — the nation’s largest state Department of Labor – where she launched the “Wage Theft is a Crime” campaign with the support of both labor and management. During her tenure as Labor Commissioner, she cracked down on wage theft, fought to protect trafficked workers, increased the minimum wage, helped to create good-paying, high-quality jobs, and established and enforced workplace safety standards.
“We are excited by President Biden’s nomination of Julie Su as Labor Secretary and urge a quick confirmation,” said Reid Maki, Director of Child Labor Advocacy for the National Consumers League. “Her record of cracking down on illegal labor trafficking and her long career as a civil rights attorney gives her a unique understanding of the plight of the most vulnerable workers.”
“Given heightened attention to the scourge of hazardous child labor, as highlighted by a recent New York Times expose, we hope Su will make this issue a top priority,” added Maki. NCL chairs the Child Labor Coalition which has long raised concerns about the safety and health of young workers in meat processing plants and in agriculture. “Unaccompanied minors are working in dangerous conditions for long hours—in the fields and in meat processing plants and other factories. Many live in the US alone without family looking after their welfare, and thus they are easily exploited. They are our most vulnerable workers,” observed Maki. “We hope that if Su is confirmed, she will make underage teens illegal employment a top priority; we also will press DOL and Su to address badly needed safety protections for children who work in agriculture, an issue before Congress that is urgently in need of a solution.”
NCL was founded by progressive era leaders at the turn of the 20th century with the goal of ending child labor in the United States and enacting minimum wage and maximum hours laws.
About the National Consumers League (NCL)
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 nclnet.org.