Honoring Civil Rights Leader Beth Shulman

Civil rights and labor leader Beth Shulman died from complications with pneumonia on Friday, February 5. 

Shulman dedicated her life to ensuring that all workers earned living wages and were treated fairly. She worked as a civil rights lawyer, a union attorney, vice president of the United Food & Commercial Workers International Union, and, most recently, the chair of the National Employment Law Project’s Board of Directors. 

She was also a noted author.  Her book, “The Betrayal of Work: How Low-Wage Jobs Fail 30 Million Americans,” was published in 2003.

Despite declining health, Shulman’s commitment to workers’ rights never wavered.  As recently as September 2009, Shulman testified before the U.S. Senate Finance Committee in support of extending unemployment insurance for Americans out of work due to the recession. 

“Beth Shulman was an incomparable advocate for workers’s rights and civil rights,” said Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference. “Now more than ever, as we face hard choices about our national economy and getting millions of Americans back to work, we will miss her visionary leadership.”