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Statements by AFT & CHC on Pres. Obama's Nomination of Gov. Sebelius for HHS Sec.

March 2, 2009



Chuck Porcari



Statement by Randi Weingarten,

President, American Federation of Teachers,

On President Obama’s Nomination of Gov. Sebelius for HHS Secretary



WASHINGTON—The American Federation of Teachers, whose more than 1.4 million members include public employees, healthcare workers and early childhood educators, applauds the nomination of Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius for Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.


The AFT has worked closely with Gov. Sebelius in Kansas, during her tenure as head of the Education Commission of the States, and as chair of the Democratic Governors Association. In Kansas, she created an unprecedented partnership with state employee unions, including the AFT, which led to a restructured state collective bargaining system emphasizing collaboration and results. Similarly, in developing and implementing education policies, she placed a premium on working with educators and other stakeholders.


As Health and Human Services Secretary, Gov. Sebelius will be a leader in efforts to reform America’s healthcare system—the success of which is vital to all Americans, especially the most disadvantaged. She also will have the important job of overseeing early childhood education programs such as Head Start—a program that has never been more important and whose expansion could not be more timely.


Gov. Sebelius was a recent addition to the advisory board of the AFT Innovation Fund. While we will miss her in that capacity, we look forward to continuing to work with her as HHS Secretary after what we hope will be a swift confirmation.






The AFT represents more than 1.4 million pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; nurses and healthcare workers; and early childhood educators.





Congressional Hispanic Caucus

111th Congress – Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez, Chair

For Immediate Release


Contact: Miguel Ayala

March 2, 2009


(202) 225-2410



CHC Applauds Selection of Governor Sebelius for HHS Secretary


(Washington DC)Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez, Chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and the House Small Business Committee, issued the following statement today applauding the selection of Kansas Governor Kathleen Sebelius for Secretary of Health and Human Services:

"I congratulate Governor Kathleen Sebelius on her nomination to be the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. The Department of Health and Human Services is one of the most important agencies for the Latino community and for small businesses struggling with the high cost of health care. Governor Sebelius has built a strong record on health care in her home state of Kansas, and a strong record with the growing Latino community there. With over 47 million Americans uninsured, including one of every three Latinos, we cannot afford to wait to reform our health care system. Latinos and other minorities are disproportionately impacted by diseases such as asthma, diabetes, and HIV/AIDS. Language and cultural barriers also complicate underserved communities' efforts to seek care. We now have a government willing to take on these challenges, ignored for too long, and Gov. Sebelius will be a terrific fit. The Congressional Hispanic Caucus looks forward to working with her closely to ensure that we reform our health care system so that it works for everyone in America."


# # #

The Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) is comprised of Members of Congress of Hispanic descent.  Since 1976 the CHC has been addressing the needs of the Hispanic community in all areas of American life.  For more information on the CHC, call (202) 225-2410.


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