Outgoing Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis Deserves Praise for Reforming Department of Labor
Written By: Ryan Heron
Earlier this month word came down that Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis would be stepping down as head of the Federal Department of Labor. Solis leaves behind a record of reshaping and reforming the department to once again serve the interests of the working people of America, as it was intended.
Solis will be a sorely missed voice of the working people in an administration that, much to the chagrin of many liberals, has been overly influenced by Wall Street and other members of the American plutocracy class. During her term as Secretary of Labor, Solis was a real champion for the working people.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s defines its mission as follows:
“To foster, promote, and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers, and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.”
During the Bush Administration, the Department of Labor functioned more as a tool to fight against wage earners, job seekers, and retirees. After eight years of the Bush administration, the department of labor was in shambles. Solis turned that around and restored credibility to the department. Rather than working for big business, the department was returned to its original purpose, fighting to protect workers.
Of course, wage earners have continued to struggle under the Obama Administration as well. The economy continues to favor those who make their earnings through capital gains and other forms of investments. Wages for most Americans have been stagnant for decades, and Obama’s administration has not made fighting to increase wages for average Americans a priority on its agenda.
Obama’s reluctance to embrace economic populism has been a disappointment for many liberals. This reluctance to fight for working families to get a better piece of the economic pie has caused many to speculate that Secretary Solis is resigning partially out of frustration with the administration. She has seen many of her initiatives fall on their face, partially due to the lack of support from the White House. Solis has denied the assertion that frustration with the administration played any role in her resigning.
Solis will leave a legacy as the person who restored credibility to the Department of Labor. She has admirably served the department of Labor, in addition to the country at large during her four years as Secretary. Upon news of her resignation, she was hailed by Richard Trumka, President of the national AFL-CIO, as well as by President Obama for her hard work in restoring the department to its mission.
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