Charity Regalado Makes Local 1000 a Family Affair
When Charity Regalado became an SEIU Local 1000 union member, it wasn’t enough, so she decided to get involved. There weren’t a lot of resources around at the time, and no one at her job seemed to have any knowledge of anything about Local 1000. But Charity had questions, and she found the opportunity to get them answered. “After that, I was hooked,” she said.
“If I had to trace back what really got me interested in leadership with my union, I would have to say attending my first SBAC. Along with meeting so many wonderful leaders who were very passionate, it was just an all-around wonderful and positive experience that I wanted to be part of,” she added.
Her experience with Local 1000 deepened as she found her own values overlapped those of her union. “Family means the world to me; the feeling that you’re part of a family is such a wonderful feeling, especially when you’re faced with challenges,” she said. “Ensuring everyone has an equal opportunity and is not treated differently or discriminated against is a part of that.”
This moral baseline helps guide her work with the union now. “I’m currently involved in many programs within our union that I find very interesting,” she said. “I’m on the NEO Committee, Cost Savings Task Force, COPE Committee, and API Committee.” Of all these programs, she remembers the feeling of being a new member looking for answers. “With the NEO Committee, I love the opportunity to be that first face and first impression a new hire experiences with Local 1000.”
Part of her work is to open up doors with new members to get more involved with Local 1000, with much of her time currently focused on member engagement and participation. “Our union is unique in that we are member led and member run, so I feel we need to get as many members involved as possible,” she said.
Developing those new members into workplace leaders is a broad task, but Charity’s approach is to focus on the range of options available to everyone. “Members can get involved in many different ways on many different levels,” she said. “It’s especially important for us to support member education about our union and our contract.” These challenging times make these resources and that knowledge that much more important. As Charity says, “Know your resources; be an activist; be a steward, be involved.”