Mary Kenney O'Sullivan was an American social activist and labor union leader. She spent her whole life advocating women's suffrage, housing for the poor, prohibition, and pacifism. Her highest priority was however organizing women into unions to fight gender inequality in the workplace and child labor.
Although a powerful force in her own right, O'Sullivan was willing and able to work together with others. In Chicago, she became close friends with Jane Addams and other activists at Hull House, supporting Florence Kelley in her efforts to end child labor and improve working conditions for women. After her husband died and she was left with three young children, O'Sullivan continued to work for reform and the development of unions.
An example of one who lived for the sake of others, O'Sullivan's efforts brought fruit both in the passage of laws and in the education of future generations whose lives have been greatly improved as a result of the reforms she advocated. Still, many of the problems she encountered have remained. This is because one cannot legislate human nature. Unification Thought explains that since the beginning of human history, as a consequence of the Fall of Man, human beings have become self-centered, and lost their connection to God and the ideal. Only a change of heart, from selfishness to living for the sake of others, following one's conscience as a guide, will bring about the changes that O'Sullivan worked so hard to achieve.