Advertisement
YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

Solis sworn in as Labor secretary

March 14, 2009|Amanda Covarrubias

Former Rep. Hilda Solis (D-El Monte) was sworn in as U.S. secretary of Labor on Friday in Washington by Vice President Joe Biden. Before the oath was administered, Biden told the group gathered at the U.S. Department of Labor headquarters that Solis will fight for the rights of workers.

"Things like fairness in the workplace and workplace safety are not just idle phrases that are to be debated in Hilda's mind; they're real," Biden said. "They affect real, live people. They're real concerns that people face every single day. She knows that a job is more than about a paycheck. . . . A job is about dignity. A job is about respect. Hilda understands that."

Solis, 51, had faced some bumps on the road to her Cabinet job, including revelations of $6,400 in outstanding tax liens owed on her husband's auto repair business. But her confirmation was cleared last month when Republicans ended plans to invoke a rule that would have forced a filibuster-proof 60 votes for confirmation.

Solis' nomination initially stalled over her role in a nonprofit group that lobbied for the contested Employee Free Choice Act, a bill that would make it easier for workers to form unions.

Solis' roots are deep in the Los Angeles area and in the union movement. Her father came from Mexico and was a Teamster who worked at a battery recycling plant. Her mother is from Nicaragua and had a union job on a Mattel assembly line.

As an elected official, she has served as an advocate for low-wage workers, particularly immigrants, and for organized labor.

--

amanda.covarrubias@latimes.com

Advertisement
Los Angeles Times Articles
|
|
|