Perkins’ Legacy Resurges During COVID-19

Perkins’ Legacy Resurges During COVID-19

Perkins’ lost legacy is finding new life, thanks to the social and economic similarities to post-Great Depression America that may emerge as the world continues to cope with COVID. “Frances Perkins’ handiwork is the system we’re using right now to relieve the distress of hundreds of millions of people,” Downey says. “The bottom line is that Frances Perkins’ life’s work was recognizing that in the course of human events, bad stuff happens, and it’s predictable that it happens, and what you want to do is create a system of elasticity that helps you have a solution to fix it.”

Frances Perkins
Former Secretary of Labor Frances Perkins, left, with Eleanor Roosevelt at the 50th anniversary commemoration of the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire in March, 1961. KHEEL CENTER/FLICKR (CC BY 2.0)


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Shining a light on Frances Perkins' legacyFinally getting her due