Another month passes as many of us remain sheltered under safe-at-home orders, while essential workers stand on the frontlines against the COVID-19 pandemic. Finding pockets of time to take a breath and reflect on how we can live through this period of fear and anxiety with love and dignity can help us to keep going. This time last year, the recipient of CSW’s 2019 Distinguished Leader in Feminism Award, Ai-Jen Poo, spoke on exactly that topic for the Awards Reception Keynote, “Organizing in a Time of Hate: Leading with Love.”
In this inspiring talk, Poo, Co-Founder and Executive Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance (NDWA), shares her experience of being raised by her grandmother and mother to fight and lead with love, rather than fear and violence. These ideals set her forth on a path of labor organizing and activism. Her work has transformed the lives of domestic and care workers across the United States. In 2010, the NDWA led the charge in passing the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights in New York state, and in 2014, Poo was named a recipient of the MacArthur “Genius” Award.
Poo was raised by a doctor; as she describes in her Keynote Address, her mother balanced caring for her children with caring for her patients. She saved the lives of countless millions as an oncologist at some of the top cancer centers in the nation.1 Poo and the NDWA continue this legacy of care, during the current pandemic, with the Coronavirus Care Fund, a support fund that provides emergency relief for domestic and care workers experiencing financial hardship due to the pandemic.
CSW urges you to support our friends at the NDWA and the care-worker community, many of whom have been left either without work, or directly exposed to the threat of the virus, while caring for the most vulnerable among us.