Council 93 Endorsement Profile: Maura Healey, Candidate for Governor

The elected leaders of AFSCME Council 93 are backing Maura Healey in her campaign to be the next Governor of Massachusetts. Members of the Council’s Executive Board voted unanimously endorse at the most recent Executive Board meeting in June. 

Currently serving her second four-year term as the state’s Attorney General, Healey secured the Council 93 endorsement through her responses to the Council’s written questionnaire and pledges she made to address issues critical to our members during an in-person interview with Council staff in May. We had extensive conversations with Maura Healey about the issues that matter to AFSCME members, issues that unfortunately are rarely discussed on the campaign trail. 

We were particularly impressed how honest she was with us about what she did and did not already know, and how willing she was to learn from our members. For example, she openly admitted that before talking to us, she was not aware of the state’s over-reliance on contract vendors in the human services system or about the high salaries paid to their executives. She also had very specific questions for us about how we might go about solving the short staffing problem in human services. In addition, when she spoke via Zoom at the SUMMUP convention in May, she asked that we help her set up some tours of some of the state’s human service facilities so she could talk more with front-line workers and learn more about the challenges they face. She was also particularly concerned about assaults on staff.   Beyond her positions on issues that are somewhat unique to AFSCME members, we are also impressed with Healey’s plans to address struggles faced by all working families – issues like the high and continuously rising cost of housing, transportation, food, healthcare and other basic needs.  

Healey’s track record as Attorney General was also a strong factor in our endorsement decision. In 2018, when anti-union organizations were trying to hinder the ability of public-sector unions to provide strong representation to their members by stretching the Janus Supreme Court beyond the strict limitations imposed by the Supreme Court, Healey was the first Attorney General in the country to issue a detailed advisory clearly spelling out what the Court’s decision meant, and did NOT mean, for public sector unions and members.  She also issued a yearly Labor Day Report detailing her impressive efforts on behalf of all workers on issues like wage theft and workplace safety. As Attorney General Healey also established a “Fair Labor Hotline” for workers who believe their workplace rights have been violated.

This Democratic Primary election for Massachusetts Governor has become less interesting since State Senator Sonia Chang-Diaz dropped out of the race in late June. However, Chang-Diaz’s name will appear on the ballot. We are therefore recommending that AFSCME members turn out in force for the September 6th primary, not only to help send a strong message going into the general election, but also to support our other endorsed candidates, who are in tough primary fights.

No candidate for Governor can possibly go into the job well-versed on every single issue. For that reason, the willingness to listen and learn is a critically important quality, and Maura Healey demonstrated throughout the endorsement process that she is willing to do that. Healey has already been endorsed by at least 21 individual unions and the Massachusetts AFL-CIO. We respectfully urge our members to support Maura Healey for Governor in the primary election on September 6, 2022 and again in the general election on November 8. Click here to find out more.