Nurses to Highlight Health Risks of Climate Change at Miami Rally

September 6, 2018

Media Advisory: September 6, 2018

CONTACT: Ed Gilhuly,, 305-807-6906

1199SEIU Healthcare Union Joining Allies to Demand Action on Climate, Jobs, and Justice

Miami, FL — Registered nurses and healthcare workers from the state’s largest healthcare union, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East, will join allies on Saturday at a concert and rally to demand meaningful climate leadership from Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and highlight the health risks of climate change. As a principal sponsor of the event, 1199SEIU nurses will be providing a “Cool Down” Tent for attendees to seek water and shade during the day’s festivities and receive information from nurses about the health risks of climate change.

“Climate change is impacting the health and economic security of our patients, families and communities and we’re calling on elected leaders like Mayor Gimenez to join with us in fighting this major threat to public health,” said Betsy Marville, a registered nurse and 1199SEIU Nurse Organizer. “Whether it’s life-threatening heat, stronger hurricanes, mosquito-borne illnesses like Zika or toxic algae like Red Tide, Floridians are already experiencing significant threats to our public health, and we need to act now, including voting in November for candidates who prioritize the issue of climate change.”

Joining Marville and other nurses, 1199SEIU Vice President Dequasia Canales will be a featured speaker at the event highlighting the impact of climate change on public health. Nurses will be raising awareness about the following climate change-related health risks during the event: heat-related illnesses, injuries and illnesses from extreme weather, water-borne diseases, asthma, heart and lung disorders, tainted drinking water, mosquito-borne illnesses like Zika, toxic algae like Red tide, food-borne diseases, and mental health issues.

In coordination with hundreds of events in the U.S. and around the world organized by the People’s Climate Movement, 1199SEIU is joining more than 80 organizations at the event. The People’s Climate Movement is a groundbreaking coalition of indigenous, environmental justice, faith-based, civil rights and immigrant groups and labor unions, which led the largest march in environmental history in 2014

What: 1199SEIU Florida “Cool Down” Tent at Miami Rising for Climate, Jobs, and Justice Concert and Rally

When: Saturday, September 8, 2018, 4-8PM

Where: Bayfront Park, 301 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33132 (Tina Hills Pavilion)

Who: 1199SEIU nurses and healthcare workers joining 80+ South Florida organizations

Local performers include Locos por Juana, Remyz, and Ra Ra Roots Rasin.

Speakers include:

• Marleine Bastien, FANM Haitian Women of Miami
• Julio Calderon, Florida Immigrant Coalition
• Mark Shaunaman, International Union of Operating Engineers; president, South Florida Building Trades
• Dequasia Canales, 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East
• Cynthia Hernandez, South Florida AFL-CIO
• Jeremy Orr, Peoples Climate Movement - National •Frances Colon, City of Miami Sea Level Rise Committee; former Obama Administration Official; Cenadores Puerto Rico
• And others

In support of the immigrant community and out of recognition that climate change is already impacting all of Miami, dozens of community groups are uniting, including: 1199SEIU Florida, Miami Climate Alliance, South Florida AFL-CIO, Florida Immigrant Coalition, Women’s March Miami, United Teachers of Dade, Catalyst Miami, AFSCME, The CLEO Institute, New Florida Majority, FANM Haitian Women of Miami, Sierra Club, 350 South Florida, NextGen America, Progressive Jewish Action, Unite Here, Sachamama, We Count!, and the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy.


1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East Florida represents more than 25,000 nurses and healthcare workers throughout Florida and more than 400,000 workers across Massachusetts, New York, Maryland, New Jersey and Washington, D.C., 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East is the largest and fastest-growing healthcare union in America. Our mission is to achieve affordable, high quality healthcare for all. 1199SEIU is part of the 2.1 million-member Service Employees International Union. For more information, please visit