The tallest building in Pittsburgh owes its title to the industrial giant that made the city famous. But instead of its floundering namesake, the U.S. Steel Tower now displays the initials of a different sort of employer: the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, or UPMC.
As Pittsburgh Grapples With A Changing Workforce, The Fight For 15 Comes To Town
Dozens of health care workers and advocates testified Thursday before the city’s Wage Committee urging it to increase pay for service workers at area hospitals. The committee was formed by City Council as part of the A City For All initiative to, “protect, preserve and expand affordability and livability for low and moderate income residents in the city of Pittsburgh, to establish a Wage Committee that investigates the wages paid to service workers.”
City Health Care And Service Workers Testify For Increased Wages
All across the country, so many people are stepping up and speaking out. One of the people who came to the White House to join the conversation was Lou Berry. Lou is a housekeeper at UPMC Montefiore in Pittsburgh. When I met him at the White House, he told me that he was there to stand up for his family and coworkers and to ask for better wages and a union.
Worker Voice in America: Taking the Conversation to Pittsburgh
It’s not every day you get invited to the White House. On Wednesday, October 7, Lou Berry, a local resident and housekeeper at UPMC Montefiore will head to Washington, D.C. for the White House Summit on Worker Voice convened by President Obama. As the White House website notes, “changing your workplace starts with a conversation.”
Lou took some time this week to share how he’s feeling ahead of the trip.
It’s not every day you get invited to the White House. On Wednesday, October 7, Lou Berry, a local resident and housekeeper at UPMC Montefiore will head to Washington, D.C. for the White House Summit on Worker Voice.
I am a proud native of Braddock, PA – born and raised in the town that built America. Braddock has also been known as a fighting town. Braddock is also where billionaire industrialist Andrew Carnegie built his first steel mill, the Edgar Thompson Works, and where between there a mile across the river, in Homestead, some of the most deadly labor battles in US History took place.
This is part of who I am and why as a worker, I fight for better. I’m also a husband, father, grandfather, son, and a lover of all Pittsburgh sports. I’m a musician, fashion lover and fisherman.
I stand up for all of my coworkers and I’m getting them involved in forming our union. Corporate greed, income inequality and large predatory corporations are eating away at the middle class in America and it’s time to address this. I’m grateful for the opportunity to visit the White House and share the struggles of low income folks and the working poor and what we’re doing to improve our workplaces and our communities.
You can follow my trip to Washington on Twitter.com/Pghhospitalwork.