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Service Workers Union - SEIU Local 82 Oral History Project

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: OHP014

Scope and Contents

Between 1993 and 1997, Service Employees International Union Local 82, the DC branch of a union representing mainly custodial workers, conducted a total of 13 oral history interviews with union members as part of the Service Workers’ Oral History and Education Project. Interviewees were current and former union members of all ages, some who had taken part in union leadership. Topics include work experiences, union politics, interviewee experiences in union leadership, and health.


  • Creation: 1993 - 1997


Conditions Governing Use

The Library holds copyright for items in this collection with a signed release. There are no restrictions on the use of these collection materials. Reproduction of an oral history without a signed release is not permitted.

Biographical / Historical

The Service Employees International Union has always sought to organize workers in a wide range of occupations. Beginning with janitors and elevator operators when it formed in 1921, SEIU soon added security guards, window cleaners, health care workers, office workers and public sector employees. By 1968, the union represented service workers in over 100 occupations around the nation.


1.25 Linear feet

2 Boxes

Language of Materials



Series 1: Transcripts Scope and Contents
Materials in this series include transcripts of the interviews. There is no transcript for 14-03.

Series 2: Interviews Scope and Contents
Materials in this series include master copies of the oral histories on audio cassette. There are two copies for audio recordings 14-07 and 14-11. All others have only one copy. There is no tape for 14-13.

Custodial History

Service Employees International Local 82 conducted these interviews between 1993 and 1997, and donated the tapes and transcripts to the Library in the late 1990s. There is no deed of gift for this collection, but all interviewee releases are granted to the Library.

Processing Information

After the initial donation to the Library, the transcripts were placed in folders and stored them in a filing cabinet with other oral histories. Tapes were placed a cabinet for patron use. In 2014, the tapes and transcripts were digitized and in 2017 the collection was reprocessed. Transcripts were placed into folders and boxed. Audio cassettes were organized and boxed. All administrative documents, including releases, were placed into the control file. There is no 14-01 tape or transcript for this collection.

Service Workers Union - SEIU Local 82 Oral History Project
An inventory of Service Workers Union - SEIU Local 82 Oral History Project at DC Public Library
DC Public Library, Special Collections
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
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Repository Details

Part of the The People's Archive, Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library Repository

901 G Street NW
4th Floor East
Washington DC 20001