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Job Details

Press Secretary

Company name

Oakland, CA, United States

Employment Type

Pr, Healthcare

Posted on
Oct 21, 2020

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Position: Press Secretary

Classification: Full-time, Exempt

Location: Oakland or Los Angeles


Position Summary:

SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW), a progressive, statewide California union of more than 100,000 hospital workers, patients, and healthcare activists, has an immediate opening for a Press Secretary to develop and execute our media relations strategy and serve as a spokesperson engaging with local, state, and national reporters.


The ideal candidate is a strong writer and communicator who is passionate about healthcare and feels called to work on behalf of the healthcare workers on the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic. This job would be a great fit if you love to learn and test new ideas, enjoy the thrill of advocacy and campaigns, or are drawn to fighting for social justice and improving the lives of working people and their families.



The Press Secretary performs a wide range of duties to promote and support our Healthcare Justice mission of securing affordable, accessible, high-quality care for everyone provided by valued, respected healthcare workers everywhere, including:


  1. Developing earned media strategies to proactively place stories that further SEIU-UHW campaign goals, elevate the voices of our hospital workers, patients, and healthcare activists, and that increase the profile and visibility of SEIU-UHW as a leading healthcare justice organization.
  2. Engaging with the press by serving as SEIU-UHW spokesperson, fielding and being responsive to media requests, leveraging social media to identify and communicate with relevant reporters, pitching creative and timely story ideas, and by developing and maintaining substantive relationships with reporters, columnists, and editors.
  3. Supporting rapid response to developments and emerging stories affecting SEIU-UHW issues and campaigns by actively following relevant news outlets and developing reactive media strategies.
  4. Coordinating media events, including timing, staging, messaging, logistics, and briefing for key event participants;
  5. Writing various materials, including press releases/advisories, statements, pitches, talking points, op-eds, letters to the editor, background pieces, fact sheets, press kit materials, and other items as needed.
  6. Preparing SEIU-UHW members, leaders, and staff for media interviews and conducting ongoing media spokesperson trainings to build our organizational capacity to engage with media.
  7. Acting as a liaison with media relations staff and communicators from collaborating labor unions, community organizations, elected officials, and coalition partners as needed for various campaigns.
  8. Developing collaborative working relationships with SEIU-UHW officers, directors, and rank-and-file leadership and fostering a deep knowledge base of SEIU-UHW programs, campaigns, and general operations.
  9. Tracking the outcomes of our media relations work: Monitoring coverage, maintaining and distributing relevant clips, maintaining updated media contact lists, analyzing results and adjusting media strategy as needed.
  10. Participating actively in the SEIU-UHW Communications Department, collaborating with fellow communications staffers, and performing other duties as assigned.


Requirements and qualifications:

• Previous experience in a newsroom or in public relations work, preferably with experience working with California media (5+ years preferred).

• Demonstrated experience in performing pro-active media outreach, maintaining good working relationships with journalists and generating positive media coverage.

• Excellent writing and oral communications skills (media/press-specific). 

• Bilingual English-Spanish strongly preferred.

• An entrepreneurial and creative mindset to develop ideas that generate media coverage and define core campaign issues.

• Ability to work with people from diverse backgrounds/cultures.

• Ability to work independently as well as on a team.

• Commitment to social justice for all people.

• Willingness to work long and irregular hours.

• Willingness to travel.

• Previous experience with/knowledge of labor unions, political campaigns, and/or other advocacy organizations strongly preferred.


Scope and Nature of Supervision:

• Reports to the Communications Director and Public Affairs Director.

• A high level of independent judgment and initiative is required.

• Able to work with elected leaders, members and staff in complex and sometimes sensitive political situations.

• Able to handle multiple "priority" projects simultaneously and meet established deadlines.

• Position may include leading other staff in a non-management role.




Writing test required.




SEIU-UHW is an affirmative action employer and encourages applications from all qualified candidates regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, marital status, religion, or disability. To apply please visit our candidate portal at

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