Happy Belated Birthday to Josephine Roche. Her birthday was yesterday, December 2. Roche was an industrialist labor activist and humanitarian. As with many great social activists throughout history, Roche had a Masters Degree in Social Work. Roche led the campaign against child labor in the sugar beet industry in Colorado, where she was the Chair of the Progressive Party. Roche spent her life working for vulnerable populations and for the disenfranchised, specifically those that were economically disenfranchised.
In 1934, President Roosevelt appointed Roche as the Assistant Secretary of the Treasury. I feel it most appropriate to honor Josephine Roche in a time when we give huge tax credits to big corporations to move in and hire workers at scab wages with the proviso that there will be no unions to protect worker’s rights.
Later in life, Roche received many honorary degrees, including an honorary degree from my alma mater, Oglethorpe University. I say with great pride that Oglethorpe produces many of us social workers who represent the 99% and work to eradicate the intersections of oppression.