New England Health Care Employees Union, District 1199 SEIU

New England Health Care Employees Union
District 1199 SEIU

Policy Director

Covering Connecticut and Rhode Island

About Us:
District 1199 SEIU is a bold, democratic Union with a long activist tradition. In his remarks at 1199’s Salute to Freedom in 1968, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr stated “Local 1199 represents the authentic conscience of the labor movement.” Over the past 25 years, we have used strategic campaigns and direct action to form unions, win significant victories for employees, and demand improvements for sick, elderly, and needy patients in nursing homes, state direct care and mental health facilities, hospitals, and other health care centers. In recent years, we’ve won a $15/hour standard for thousands of low-wage workers through militant direct-action campaigns, fought racism on the job, campaigned for progressive policy in the state legislature, and engaged in the community around a variety of social justice issues.

The majority of our members and staff are women, people of color, and/or immigrants. A key guiding principle of our Union is to facilitate and stimulate the broadest possible rank and file participation in the formulation and execution of the program of the Union. Holding with these principles, 1199 organizers work to activate and develop a diverse body of leaders to use their collective power to demand respect and improve conditions in the workplace.

In these challenging times, when so much wealth and power is concentrated in the hands of so few, we believe it is more important than ever to unite health care workers and the working class as a whole together with the broader political and social justice movement to achieve respect and dignity, economic and racial equality on the job and in our communities.

Purpose of This Position:

  • Develop, analyze, and research public policy.
  • Design and lead campaigns around policy objectives in the legislature and administrative arenas. These campaigns will be cross-departmental (internal, external, political, communications, and research). The policy will be in the area of health care, primarily in Connecticut in the public and private sector, in long term care, developmental disabilities, and acute care.
  • Represent the union in community as needed on councils and coalitions around these campaigns, and strengthen these relationships.
  • Engage members and non-members in our policy program and work with external and internal organizers to engage them in the development and execution of this work.

Responsibilities Include:

  • Collaborate with the political director and other program/department directors to develop policy initiatives.
  • Produce timely, relevant, and accurate materials to support the Union’s health advocacy work. Work on projects related to public and private health coverage and services, healthcare workforce development and standards, health care financing and regulatory issues, and healthcare system reform.
  • Under the guidance of the President, develop written testimony, public comments, correspondence and other materials to promote the health policy agenda with policymakers and elected officials.
  • Create and craft policy that leads to a long-term plan to improve the lives of our members and those they serve in the area of long-term care and with people with developmental disabilities.
  • Creating and implementing plans to pass campaigns using coalitions, member engagement, community engagement, research and policy.
  • Assist in development of the union’s political program,
  • Lobby elected officials and government agencies,
  • Supporting the union’s overall political program as needed.


  • Strong commitment to social justice and to building a strong, vibrant labor movement
  • Strong written and verbal communications skills.
  • Possess an understanding of the political structure and process.
  • Position requires deep knowledge of public policy affecting our members specifically the work in long-term care and care for people with developmental disabilities, organizing experience, and lobbying experience.
  • Lobbying experience should include experience drafting legislation, coordination of in-the-halls lobbying campaigns and grass-roots lobbying campaigns, maintenance of ongoing relationships with legislators, preparation and delivery of testimony
  • Experience with policy analysis, an understanding of communications and field support for lobbying campaigns, and an understanding of budgets and the budgeting process.
  • Experience working with coalitions and working to mobilize the community in campaigns.
  • Demonstrated ability to work with a variety of personalities and organizations and under pressure, to prioritize work and carry it through to conclusion without close supervision.
  • Experience as a lead staffer preferred.
  • Capable of using computer and various software packages.
  • Ability and stamina to work irregular and long hours, and attend weekend and evening activities.


  • Reports to the President

Salary & Benefits:

  • Competitive salary depends on experience. This job includes a generous benefits package including pension and health insurance.

To Apply:
Send cover letter and résumé to:

Bill Meyerson
77 Huyshope Avenue, Hartford CT 06106
Email: bmeyerson@seiu1199ne.org

WHEN APPLYING: Be sure to indicate that you saw this information at UNIONJOBS.COM.