This Thursday, most of us will be gathering with friends and family to celebrate Thanksgiving Day. While family holiday traditions vary, gratitude and appreciation is the universal theme of the day, which is very appropriate, of course, because all know the Pilgrim story of thankfulness for a great harvest after very difficult years.
Our SEA family also has much for which to be grateful. As union members, we continue to set the bar for wages, benefits, and worksite protections for workers as we have done for decades. While challenges and changes swirl around us, our members continue to rise to the occasion and advocate for social and economic justice in our state. We understand that as we gain, our communities also gain.
Like many of you, I am deeply concerned about many of today’s issues. On the top of this list, of course, are the unnecessary deaths of so many innocent people all across the world – deaths not only at the hands of extremists, but also caused by poverty, climate change, and the pollution of natural resources. Turning on the radio or my computer has become a small act of courage as I wait for the news of the most recent mass shooting, terrorist act, or, closer to home, another loss of life to the disease of addiction. I know I will not be alone in asking for the relief of all this suffering and the strength and wisdom to do my small part in helping.
Despite the chaos in our world, I remain optimistic about our future because of our great union and its members. Over many years in state service, I have seen first-hand, countless, exceptionally gifted public servants and know all too well the sacrifices associated with providing services for the public good. As SEA President, I have also seen the dedication, commitment, and quiet service rendered by all of you. You inspire me.
On this Thanksgiving Day, allow me – on behalf of our exceptional Board of Directors and staff – to thank you for your selflessness and hard work to help serve the citizens of New Hampshire. It is with deep gratitude and appreciation that we recognize the men and women whose work will keep them from their families on Thanksgiving – may you find in your own unique way the opportunity to celebrate with your family.
With heartfelt thanks for all that you do and wishes for a happy and safe holiday,