SEIU 1021

SEIU 1021 President Theresa Rutherford’s statement on the 6/30/23 Supreme Court decisions:


As you’ve probably heard by now, two devastating decisions were passed down by the United States Supreme Court today that further establish its regressive, harmful attitudes and policies toward the people of this country.

In a 6-3 decision, the justices ruled in favor of a Colorado-based web designer who argued that providing services to LGBTQ+ couples for same-sex weddings was against her religious beliefs. This is discrimination, and Colorado law agreed, but six of the justices sided with the business owner, opening the door for even more discrimination against LGBTQ+ people and other members of protected classes.

What is to prevent a restaurant from refusing to serve Black people, brown people, or anyone perceived as “different”? Where is the line? The justices have once again undermined our democracy and perpetrated racist and discriminatory laws that destroy the very fabric of our society. We must not accept this. We must fight back.

In another saddening yet unsurprising 6-3 decision, the Court has also voted to strike down the Biden administration’s attempt to relieve some of the financial burden on 43 million Americans, primarily Black and brown people, who have been struggling under debilitating student debt. It’s a travesty of justice and an insult to millions of workers who continue to carry the burden of building, sustaining, and growing this great country, yet are, once again, left holding the bag while corporations and banks are routinely bailed out.

The conservative justices continue to prioritize billionaires, banks, and big businesses, while repeatedly turning their backs on millions of LGBTQ+ people, women, and people of color with their rulings. The latest decisions are just two more examples of their disconnection from the majority of people in our country. We must create checks and balances to hold this “rogue” Court accountable. We must create term limits and establish a strong code of ethics for this Supreme Court to mitigate further harm to our democracy and dismantle racist laws that continue to harm us socially and economically.

So, where do we go from here? We must and will keep fighting. We must stay engaged in politics. We must talk to our friends, co-workers, our family, and our neighbors. Get involved on the local and state level. Get involved in COPE at your Union. Get to know your school board members and who is running. Attend city council meetings. Know who is running in judicial elections.

We must not throw our hands in the air. Despite the desperate attempt to divide us by those in positions of power and privilege, we have more in common with each other than not. And it is in all our best interest that our liberties remain intact, and all of us have the opportunity to thrive and grow. The only way we can do that is together.

Stay active. Stay hopeful. When we fight, we win!