Strong unions make for stronger island

Island employees, earning a good wage with job security, is what is needed.

Ms. Hatton’s letter (“Union negotiations a detriment to customers,” June 27) states that she is not against organized labor but rather is concerned about the cost that could be passed on to the Water District 19 customers as a result of possible litigation between the district and Local #302. At this time there is no litigation pending or being intended. This is a scare tactic often espoused by one who holds a personal agenda and animosity towards unions, generally instigated and supported by the employer.

Strong unions can offer a worker security, benefits that are necessary and not guaranteed outside the blanket of a union contract, a decent livable wage that is so necessary in today’s world, and is key to attracting and keeping knowledgeable, trained employees on the island. Ms. Hatton herself states in the second paragraph of her letter of the challenges that island businesses face in attracting and retaining employees.

As a retired union truck driver with over 32 years as a strong union member, I personally can testify that without the wages, benefits and strength of belonging to a strong union I would not enjoy the pension I now receive that allows me to stay in the home that I purchased decades ago with union wages.

Life can be difficult enough; scare tactics and false information is not what is needed here. Island employees, earning a good wage with job security, is what is needed.

— Richard B. Foulkes




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