by Kate Childs Graham | July 02, 2012
Joyce Miller (Photo courtesy CLUW)
The American labor movement grieves the loss of a hero who passed away this weekend.
Joyce Miller broke barriers throughout her career, including becoming vice president of the Amalgamated Clothing and Textile Workers Union. In 1977, she was elected president of Coalition of Labor Union Women (CLUW), the nation’s only organization for union women. In 1980, when elected as vice president of the AFL-CIO, Miller became the first woman to sit on the federation's executive council.
As president of CLUW, Miller helped the organization meld the goals of the labor movement and women’s movement. She fought for fair pay, health care, the Equal Rights Amendment, pensions, family leave and more. And she changed the way the American Labor Movement viewed gender equality.
In a 2009 interview, Miller said, “Don't forget, when we started CLUW, all letters were signed ‘fraternally.’”
That those in the labor movement now sign our letters ‘In solidarity’ is a testament to Miller’s work toward solidarity and equality.