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Dreaming Big in Baltimore

Commuters coming through Baltimore’s Penn Station are seeing more than a sales pitch on the station’s billboards and kiosks. In celebration of Black History Month, 1199SEIU is honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Coretta Scott King with a series of inspirational ads that highlight their role in helping to build our union.

From the 1950s on, Dr. King had a close relationship with the union, calling himself “a fellow 1199er.” In 1969, Mrs King came to Baltimore and stood with the workers of Johns Hopkins as they united to improve conditions at the hospital and founded our local chapter.

The “DREAM” ads, which are on every billboard and kiosk in Penn Station, show how 1199SEIU is carrying on the Kings’ legacy in our Heart of Baltimore campaign. In the campaign, thousands of healthcare workers from across Baltimore are uniting to win a voice for better care and better jobs in our hospitals and nursing homes. The ads are also on display on bus shelters near the hospitals and nursing homes where Baltimore’s caregivers work.

At the core of the Heart of Baltimore campaign is the call for “free and fair union elections” for every healthcare worker — a fundamental civil right that both Kings fought for throughout their lives. During the 1959 contract fight that established a living wage for New York’s 1199 members, Dr. King called it “more than a fight for union rights…. It is a fight for human rights and human dignity.”

To learn more about our union’s connection to the Kings, click here.

And you can help Baltimore’s caregivers keep their dream alive by signing our petition here.