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Statement by Rev. Al Sharpton Regarding the Nomination of Thomas E. Perez as United States Secretary of Labor

"I joined today with other leaders of the civil rights community at the White House as the President of the United States nominated Thomas E. Perez to be Secretary of Labor. Mr. Perez's tenure in the civil rights division of the United States Justice Department has been effective and refreshing in a division that, for many years, had appeared to be all but dormant. Mr. Perez has proven himself to be a committed public servant who has done credible work around unemployment and employment discrimination among African-Americans. He is a champion for issues impacting hardworking middle-class families and Blacks and Latinos.

"National Action Network has been directly involved with raising issues of voter suppression and various other pivotal civil rights issues around the country, and though we were not always in agreement with the final judgment by the Justice Department, we can clearly say that the attention, sensitivity, and professionalism demonstrated by Mr. Perez and his team for all Americans in the past has been notable.

"We at National Action Network also had a good working relationship with outgoing Labor Secretary Hilda Solis who not only spoke at the last three NAN national conventions and other activities, but would appear on my daily syndicated radio show and MSNBC show on a monthly basis to report unemployment numbers, whether they were good or bad. Mr. Perez, given his effectiveness at the Justice Department will surely continue the efforts of transparency and commitment towards closing the persistent employment gap between minorities and others, and to lower unemployment for all Americans to its lowest possible numbers. We hope the Senate will quickly confirm this appointment."


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