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VIDEO: Biden Praises Arizona UFCW Pharmacy Worker and COVID Survivor for Helping Vaccinate Essential Workers Amid COVID Delta Surge

September 8, 2021 Updated: September 13, 2021

Arizona Union for 22,000 Essential Workers Features Pharmacy Worker at White House Event Supporting American Workers Nationwide

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW), the union for 22,000 Arizona essential workers in grocery, pharmacy, meatpacking, and otherfrontline industries, joined President Joe Biden at a White House event honoring America’s essential workers and recognizing the many labor unions strengthening worker protections as the pandemic continues.

Arizona pharmacy worker and UFCW Local 99 union member Jocelyn Cruces introduced President Biden, speaking about her experience as a COVID survivor who is now helping vaccinate other Arizona essential workers and families. Click here for video clip and click here for photo.

Arizona UFCW Local 99 member Jocelyn Cruces remarks at White House: “I am a proud Arizona essential worker and member of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 99, working as a pharmacy tech at Safeway in Bisbee. These past 18 months have been difficult and tested all of us in different ways. 

“As a COVID survivor who was on oxygen for 30 days, I know firsthand how dangerous this pandemic has been for workers like me who couldn’t stay home. And losing my beloved mother to this virus last year, I also know how devastating it has been for so many families across the country. 

“After I survived COVID, I was afraid to go back to work, knowing how real the danger was. But my union and customers showed me so much love and support. They are the ones that helped me feel better when I got back to work. 

“When the COVID-19 vaccine became available, I got it and decided to apply to administer the vaccine at Safeway and got certified by the state to help protect even more essential workers. 

“I enjoy going to work every day now because I help save lives by administering vaccines and helping so many in my community to keep themselves and their families safe. I am so thankful whenever I have the opportunity to share my story and help other people make the choice to get the vaccine. It is the best feeling! 

“When I had COVID, I was worried I wouldn’t make it. If you are not vaccinated, I hope my story inspires you to do your part and get the vaccine. In these uncertain times, I am thankful to our leaders, who are standing up for all workers. Working parents like me need pro-worker policies like the Child Tax Credit that is providing so much support and financial assistance that helps so many of us provide for our families. 

“As COVID risks continue for workers like me, we need Congress to do even more by passing the Build Back Better legislation that will do much to support America’s working families. I am so thankful to be able to share my story today at the White House and to be a voice for workers and Labor across the country.”


UFCW is the largest private sector union in the United States, representing 1.3 million professionals and their families in healthcare, grocery stores, meatpacking, food processing, retail shops and other industries. Our members serve our communities in all 50 states, Canada and Puerto Rico. Learn more about the UFCW at ufcw.org

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