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Strike threat shows need for SB5

Published: Fri, August 26, 2011 @ 12:00 a.m.

Strike threat shows need for SB5

Even the threat of a strike at YSU is unacceptable. The students are innocent victims in this entire situation, essentially held hostage by the OEA. Many students including myself work two or three jobs to just get by and pay tuition.

The threat of a strike is why S.B. 5, now known as Issue 2, must pass. Striking in the private sector is one thing because that only affects a small aspect of the community. But a strike in the public sector is much more harmful. YSU has approximately 16,000 students. A strike would affect each and every one of them because of a delayed or worse case scenario canceled semester. It would affect the entire community. The people of Youngstown are held hostage to the OEA’s greed.

Our tuition has gone up 3.5 percent this year, yet the faculty expects a raise? That is intolerable. How is that fair to the students who work so hard to get through school? At a time where unemployment sits at skyrocket highs and working class people are forced to take pay cuts and benefit reductions, why should we continue to give those in the public sector more and more raises?

The union is fighting one major issue and that is health-care coverage. The administration asks that they pay 15 percent toward their benefits, but the OEA cries foul over this. Currently YSU employees pay a small percentage toward their benefits. As health-care costs continue to climb it is a fair request that the union’s employees pay their fair share.

The state’s $8 billion budget deficit affected us all. With the budget cuts, funding was lost. Students sucked up and accepted their 3.5 percent tuition increase this year. We sacrificed; it is time our professors do the same. The administration simply asked for a pay freeze, yet the union claimed it was being asked for a pay cut.

The threat of a strike just days before the start of the fall semester is why collective bargaining reform known as Issue 2 is so vital to not only the financial security of our state, but to the fairness towards students for years to come.

Ryan Beil, Boardman

The writer is vice chairman of YSU College Republicans.

Don’t blame the faculty at YSU

Strikes are tough. And, in the end, no one wins. Yet, when lost in a forest, the only way to survive is to take the difficult route. One thing is clear, the situation at Youngstown State University is not the fault of the faculty. They were not asking for more money, only to maintain a semblance of their already meager wages.

It is a common misconception that instructors make an absurd amount of money. Have you ever met the YSU faculty? Most don’t. Most are just like any of us. They drive old cars, live in normal houses and struggle to pay off their debts and loans.

In spite of this, they were willing to take a massive pay cut, but that was not good enough for the administration.

YSU wants to expand and grow, but no remodeled building is going to make the school any better. It takes the hard work of a faculty who put in countless hours outside of class supporting and connecting with students.

Never once during my time at YSU have I looked at the Rec Center and said, “Wow! This building really changed my life, I’m so glad I came to YSU!”

On the other hand, there have been numerous occasions when the faculty has had the power to affect me. Through words of encouragement, advice and motivation, the faculty of YSU has pushed me to do my best and grow as a student, writer and person.

The faculty is the reason YSU matters. Don’t let pettiness take attention away from that.

Matthew Lattanzi, North Jackson


1Woody(452 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

"Meager wages", Cry me a river. What is average salary at YSU for faculty? $75k, for Professors only, $100k? Are you kidding me.

If you are not making enough where you are at, go somewhere else, don't let the door hit you on the way out. That is how it works in the real world. You work for Company A, they pay you X, Company B across the street, will by you Y to do close to the same work. Then go get a job at Company B.

If you can't do, TEACH. If you can't TEACH, stay home and find a way to get some Obama money.

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2jethead11(139 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Ryan, a very well thought out letter. We need to get that message out to your fellow students and the community at large. The public sector union's war on the taxpayer must stop, and the voters of Ohio will be able to do that this fall. People need to stop worrying about the gainfully employeed with good salaries and start being concerned about the rest of society, like students, taxpayers, and the poor...the real victims of union greed.

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3pgurney(284 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

The issue, as I see it, is not the lack of pay raises, but the pay CUTS they're being asked to take over the next 3 years.

And I ask, again, why should your faculty take pay CUTS when the administration voted pay RAISES for themselves?

THAT is what is unfair.

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4WilliamSwinger(341 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago


"...your faculty take pay CUTS..."

There is no pay cut. You cannot call increased costs a pay cut just because the net amount of the paycheck goes down. Costs increase and those costs are deducted from wages. But if you insist on arguing from this point I would suggest that to solve the problem YSU drop healthcare altogether and offer a 10% pay increase. Then you would have a raise, right? There would be no deduction for healthcare and the take home paycheck would go up so that would be a pay raise, right?

Keep arguing though because all these posts are helping to clarify for we uneducated fools out here the fact that the union faculty is completely disconnected from reality.

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5valleyred(1100 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Peggy, the bottom line is their salary will go up 2% over three years instead of 3% as what they supported in the fact-finders report. The administration has agreed to take a pay freeze and to contribute more to their health care as well.

Not sure why their is so much anger over this deal. They supported a deal which meant 3% raises over 3 years and to pay 15% of their health care, but they won't support a deal which means 2% raises over 3 years and them paying 10%, 12%, and 15% of their health care over three years.

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6Woody(452 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Watch it ValleyRed, these are college professors. They are used to dealing in theory (not the real world). Don't confuse them with facts.


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7helorime(10 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

I am laughing right now at the ignorance of these comments. We professors work more than 40 hours per week. To count only the hours that we are physically standing in front of a class is like counting only the number of words in a news article times the typing speed of the reporter that wrote it as the total time "working" by that reporter.

Similarly the work week of a firefighter is more than the number of hours that that firefighter is physically fighting a fire, and the work week of a policeman more than the time spent chasing and arresting a suspect.

For those SB5 supporters who want the state to simply pay less and less to the people who provide important services, and to decrease their benefits as the governor and legislators (who vote in nice fat raises for themselves) so desire, try moving to a developing country where that sort of thing is standard. Experience the results of low wages for the people who provide public services, which is poor services. If you think higher degrees are worthless, by all means don't bother to get any.

I suspect that some here have indeed not bothered with education as they think that 0% salary increase, a decrease in summer teaching money and higher health care costs are a "raise".

If you want those of us who have expertise, years of experience and take our jobs very seriously to leave and go to places where we can be paid more competitively, I almost hope that you get your wish. May you end up living in a place where services are terrible, any local educational opportunities are worthless, and the community has no forward thinking people. Take it all into the toilet in your desire to pay employees as little as you can.

I hope your children have better fortune and manage to become better educated and more thoughtful though.

In the meantime I'd better get back to preparing my lectures.

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8AnotherAverageCitizen(1175 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

unions hate ameica,

Come up with something new besides name calling. Public union employes make up a small percentage of Ohio workforce. They pay taxes too.

I would guess college instructors work more the 40 hours a week. Sure if you only count class time, then no its not 40 hours a week. But then salesman out in the private sector, counting sales call for 30 minutes a day don't work 40 hours in a week. And why do we worry about the 40 hours, oh yea UNIONS pushed for that many years ago to stop employers from making people work so many hours in a week.


Vote No on issue 2

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9jmagaratz(169 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

looks like "unionshateAmerica" is a one person propaganda machine....spews consistent "anti-union" line....wonder if he/she might also be "anti UNION OF THE STATES" as in USA!

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10youngspartanrepublican(92 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Supporting SB5 isn't rejecting academia and higher education. Many business and medical professionals with advanced degrees support SB5. Heck my mom who is a public school teacher supports SB5. The Unions need to lose some of their power. I asked my mom why they didn't even consider going on strike when they've agreed to contracts with pay freezes for YEARS. She said there was no point because of the climate and the likelihood that the offers wouldn't get any better. Professors at state institutions should be fortunate for the relatively low amounts they need to contribute to health care plans. It's also incredibly ignorant to dismiss all conservatives as not supporting academics. I think professors just like to pick on us because we refuse to bow down to them and their sick liberal views. Sorry, but someone wearing an Obama shirt to lecture isn't going to make me change my mind. The materials are fascinating, some of the views of the people who present them are not so fascinating. But this should not be an opportunity to attack the professors for their teaching. It cannot be stated enough how good a job many of them do. But the reality of the matter is the university is in a financial shortfall. They haven't had any additional reserve funds the last three years. The faculty wants that money for their salaries. It would be smart to accept the current offer, because SB5 is knocking and will hopefully take effect so that disputes like this don't even happen anymore.

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11jupiter(116 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Supporting SB5 is nothing more than supporting the very corporate philosophy that is destroying this country. That is fact. SB5 DOES NOT give taxpayers any type of break on taxes. SB5 WILL COST COMMUNITIES MORE however once the lawsuits start flying. Don't think so? Consider this: Once employees are subject to dismissal without cause (as SB5 allows) human nature is going to kick in. And that means cronyism and nepotism will run rampant. The recourse for employees subjected to capricious and vindictive behavior by supervisors? SEE 'YA IN COURT!!!
The young republicans need to experience reality as it really is rather than regurgitate the rhetoric they seem so eager to consume.
PS: Mr. Beil-when you go out and actually EARN something, on your own, you will understand why those of us who oppose SB5 feel the way we do.

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12youngspartanrepublican(92 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

I know Mr. Beil personally. For a college student, he works harder than most people I know. He has two jobs and is taking over 20 credit hours to finish his degree in 2 years. It's clear that Jupiter has run out of intelligent attacks because he/she has now stooped to a new low to attack the man personally. SB5 is all about creating accountability and fairness.

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13jethead11(139 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Jupiter, your reality will not be around if SB5 passes. Unions will have their little trantrums, going to court, picketing, the things they do. Eventually they will give up, people will see that loosing bargaining rights is not the end of the world, and this country will get back on its feet again. I live in a right to work state where the public sector unions have no power. They can't strike. And guess what, they survive and even thrive in that environment.

Youngspartanrepublican, these old union lovers will be slowly slipping away. Keep up the work getting Ohio and the Valley on the right track. Don't let them intimidate you. They really are all talk, I've been fighting them for 20 years. The U.S. union population is less than 11% now. We are winning. But SB5 is needed to make further progress.

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14300(566 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

College Republicans at a Public University. If that's not irony I don't know what is.

To the young Republican from Boardman, if your mother's a public school teacher, and she's a Republican who supports SB5, then she's an idiot. It really is that simple.

I assuming here, but to even be a Republican and a school teacher, then that means that there's some reason other than an economic one to be so. The day you realize that your teaching family actually has more in common with the unemployed than it does with those of us in the business community is the day you realize your true position in life.

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15300(566 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Go ahead, man up, be that Republican that you like to say you are. There are plenty of private universities around, quit taking advantage of public subsidies, and pay for your own education in the private sector.

I can't stand people who benefit, in this case by the thousands of dollars, from public goods but try to pretend that they're these right-wing, self-reliant types.

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16Stan(9923 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

The viability of YSU deems that it be financially sound . When they can no longer meet their obligations because of salary overexpenditure who wins ?

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17youngspartanrepublican(92 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

I turned down going to Notre Dame (yes, the one in South Bend) to attend YSU. Some of the great academic programs, such as the University Scholars and BS/MD programs which attract top students were created by you guessed it, administrators. Harry Meshel (a Democrat nonetheless) helped created NEOUCOM. I also do not take any federal aid thank you very much. All you're doing is hurting yourselves when you resort to personal attacks. Look at an OEA mailing, its political propaganda. My mom has taught for 40 years now and has seen more of the education system than most of you could ever think of. She's also only been a Republican leaning voter the last few years. Thankfully she's not the only non socialist Democrat teacher I've encountered. In fact, two of my favorite (and the best) teachers at Boardman High School we're Conservative/Libertarian. My AP Government teacher was and still is one of the best teachers at the school and my AP English teacher was a fan of Ayn Rand and lectured from "Freakonomics" in a summer Economics class. These people are not idiots. In fact, they should be held in higher regard for not towing the popular party line.

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18jethead11(139 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

I agree with the above. A lot of teachers, including YSU professors, are Republicans/conservatives/libertarian. I would not donate my hard earned money to the University or my old department if they were a bunch of childish lefties. They were Republican when I was a student and didn't have two pennies to rub together (in other words, they are not just saying that).

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19jupiter(116 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

wow...touched a nerve, eh? First, climb off of the cross: you're not the only person to work two jobs. And you won't be the last either, especially if SB5 passes. ALOT of us work multiple jobs..
As for earning something on your own: Your mother was a teacher...and made a very livable, middle class salary (rightfully so) while doing it. Why is it always ok for individuals such as you, your mother and family to profit under a system...but once the system no longer is favorable its touted as "wasteful, etc."
Its doubtful that you live on your own...why not join the ranks of us that work (more than 2 jobs), pay for college ourselves, and still support dependents. I have a feeling that once introduced to what reality really is like you will change your (misguided) ideology.
Its easy to spew conservative political rhetoric from behind mommy's apron. Reality tends to dull zealots. Please don't be so quick to make blanket statements regarding the political leanings of the medical establishment, either. Most of us see Kasich for what he is...and we don't like what we see.
Your "accountability and fairness" statement has me intrigued...what part of SB5 allows for that? Collective bargaining allows for "accountability and fairness." Which is why it works!!!
Finally your mentioning of Ayn Rand is laughable. Like your conservative, I-wanna-be-Alex-p.-Keaton, persona-its all FICTION. The reality of it is that Rand was on PUBLIC ASSISTANCE at the end of her life....

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20jupiter(116 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

"unionshateamerica" YOU exemplify everything that is wrong with society in general and politics in specific. How is earning a livable wage, under safe working conditions somehow unpatriotic?
Is SB5 patriotic? By allowing for provisions that DO AWAY WITH MINIMUM SAFE STAFFING LEVELS FOR POLICE AND FIRE (and before you get all glenn beck on us know this: these standards are nationally set and involve specific response times....)
Was the passage of SB5 earlier this year, without testimony, patriotic?
No one is "demanding" anything...hell, last week your man good guv'nor john even wanted to "negotiate." was that because he is backtracking now OR was that just the poor PR stunt everyone realized it for?
And now the administration, no doubt under orders from Columbus, is trying to get the faculty against the wall...all in hopes of generating bad press for the repel of SB5....to quote a movie, "...Sorry, son. This CHESS, not CHECKERS...." See 'ya at the polls... ;)

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21jupiter(116 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

"Unionshateamerica" may i point out just a little inconvenient truth here? Such stalwart and exemplary Americans (dripping *sarcasm*) like Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols held beliefs such as yourself...and no doubt they would be right at home at one of your little Tea Parties...
As for your assertion that YSU "Teachers are living better than the average wage....?" Well, isn't that a good thing? Isn't that one of the core principles of conservatism-That hard work is rewarded?
Unfortunately i think its a fallacy...these professors are grossly underpaid. The same for school teachers. Especially since we're gearing up for a century of competition where India and China may be the new neighborhood tough guys...ponder that one, my oh-so-reich-winger.
Maybe, just maybe why guys like you think they all have it so good is that you yourself have never amounted to much. And your own ineffectual existence causes you to lash out at others who have EARNED their own success. I believe that one of your own Christian teachings goes something along the lines of, "Thou shall not covet thy neighbor's property...."
As far as you being "pro safety forces?" Guess what skippy-pick a side. If you are proSB5 it means you hate cops and fire fighters. Period. Because SB5 has such draconian provisions in it that it effectively guts your safety forces. This fight against SB5 IS NOT about copays or insurance premiums...unfortunately its about real world safety issues. Quit drinking the kool aid.
And that is where I take great exception to Mr. Beil endorsing a law that puts myself and others in unnecessary danger. In fact it downright sickens me. Put your life on the line first kid before you tell others how to do it.
In closing "Unionshateamerica" I will also point out that as disgusting and shameful as I may find their behavior, at least guys like McVeigh and Nichols had the courage of their (mis)guided beliefs to act, rather than trolling internet sites all day long. Guess that's just more proof of your own impotence, both as a man and a would-be pundit.

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22jupiter(116 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

I do like my job... so much so that I willingly do it at great peril to my physical well-being.And much like we're all supposed to be in awe of the little republican from boardman choosing to go to school at YSU rather than to south bend, I chose my profession over medical school-willingly and gladly. What I will not tolerate is wing-nuts such as yourself telling me what level of safety provisions I will have. WHICH IS EXACTLY WHAT SB5 DOES...it makes bargaining for staffing levels and safety equipment illegal.
I have such a problem with Mr. Beil endorsing this bill for exactly the same reasons: HE HAS NOT A CLUE OF WHAT SB5 REALLY CONTAINS...AND HE HIMSELF HAS NEVER PLACED HIMSELF IN HARM'S WAY. Yet he feels he is entitled to tell me the intricacies of my job. And his only claim to fame is being a taxpayer and a student? Guess what? I have the exact same claims.
Just a little fact that the repubs gloss over: SB5 EXEMPTS POLITICIANS and COMMITTEE MEMBERS FROM THESE VERY SAME "reasonable and fair provisions" (their words!). WHY IS THAT? IF SB5 is sooooo great for Ohio, shouldn't Kasich et al lead by example?

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23cambridge(3122 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

UnionsbuiltAmerica.....Did you preach the same BS when you spent your life as a union autoworker enjoying the sacrifices of generations fighting your battles for you?

I'm sure you enjoyed that living wage, health plan and pension that you now feel others don't deserve. It's amazing you can type with that much slime oozing out of you.

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24cambridge(3122 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

UnionsbuiltAmerica....You admit you enjoyed every benefit that generations of union workers sacrificed for you and ask me "What did u want me 2 do".

How about you went work in that 89% of the workforce that isn't unionized. You are like every other teabagger, you want anyone that has something you don't have to lose theirs but in the same breath say, "don't touch mine."

Get rid of social security and medicare for people younger than you but don't touch yours, cut other peoples wages, health benefits and pensions because you already got yours. Complain if the rich have to pay another 4% on their taxes or corporations have to actually pay taxes or lose their tax subsidies payed for by the middle class as if you are on the same financial level as those rich, when in fact you probably pay little or no income tax yourself. I know your going to dispute that but I also know your not going to tell me how much you paid in federal income tax last year either.

The teabagges are the worst thing that ever happened to the republican party and both will find that out in Ohio in November and both will definitely find it out in November of 2012.

If you want to turn Ohio into a right to work state you should just move to one and see what the quality of life in those backwards backwoods states is really like. You'd fit right in.

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25grizzlyinohio(2 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Only a Young Republican could have written such a bone-headed column. One thing is clear and that is the YSU administration is completely operating as a tool of the Kasich administration. Doing the best for YSU and its students is the absolute furthest thing from their mind.

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26woolyd(579 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

"Shes also only been leaning Republican voter the last few years". I wonder why that is. You can ride with them on the bus but dont vote them into office.

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27Aptenodytes(8 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

To all you young republicans that don't want their tuition to help pay for professor's salaries... put your money where your mouth is. If you can find a better education for a better price... please go there! Universities operate under the same free market principles you espouse. Your conservative principles should tell you that if you can't afford something, then maybe you should't ask others to sacrifice just so that you can get what you feel you're "entitled" to. That would be kinda...ahhh...what's the word..."socialist"?! Hypocrisy at its finest, no?

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28Westsider(224 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Yes, public workers pay taxes - but they don't want to concede cadillac healthcare plans and generous pensions which are subsized by other taxpayers who are struggling to make ends meet - in this case - college students and their families. The gravy train has to end somewhere - and as far as I'm concerned - SB 5 needs to pass to make sure it does.

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29southsidedave(4948 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

It is easy to criticize when all the facts are not known. SB 5 is not a good idea.

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30Westsider(224 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

I am very aware of the facts - I do my research before deciding the way to vote on any candidate or issue.

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31RustOnMyBelt(126 comments)posted 3 years, 5 months ago

Please post the list of small businessmen of Ohio who have recently given Kasich their support on SB5. I would like to know which businesses to avoid in the future.

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32cambridge(3122 comments)posted 3 years, 4 months ago

UnionsbuiltAmerica....You should be saying "unions were good for me and my life's work but all others should be denied the benefits I enjoyed." Hypocrite.

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33Aptenodytes(8 comments)posted 3 years, 4 months ago

It is a free market in the sense that no one is forcing you to go to YSU. Don't like the tuition there? Go somewhere else where you will find a better deal. Can't afford it? Take out a loan or WORK HARDER. You are a closet communist asking others to sacrifice their salaries so you can afford an artificially deflated cost. If you want a house, is it right to demand construction workers work for minimum wage just so you can afford it? Maybe you should step up your game a bit and take some personal responsibility for your financial condition.

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34disgustedjoker(46 comments)posted 3 years, 4 months ago

SB5 will create fairness? Are you kidding me? Unless you work for a public agency and see all the hidden deals made behind closed doors, please close your mouth! Atleast union contracts provide guidelines to those public officials that were appointed by their elected leaders. It spells out how to promote, give increases, etc. I see first hand how it is when the leaders have full control over promotions. They give huge raises to their friends whether they are qualified or not. Heck, they promote their friends to management position who were the WORST abusers of the system. Dont go to work, do as little as you have to and kiss your bosses a-- and you'll get that management position..... PLEASE, become educated about public workers before you place the blame on unions because that is by far the problem...

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35RustOnMyBelt(126 comments)posted 3 years, 4 months ago

This Monday became a holiday over 100 years ago
when working people in New York City declared it a
holiday. They walked off their jobs so that they could
meet and march together. This was one moment in a
long struggle for workers’ rights. Labor Day never was
a pat on the back to the wage earner. Nor was it some
sort of romantic celebration of human labor. Labor
Day was about unions and unions were the way that
working people responded to years of mistreatment by
owners and bosses. Labor Day was a holiday to honor the sacrifice and
amazing courage of workers who had no standing at all
until they stood together. It was a holiday to
acknowledge the right and even the duty of working
people to organize unions and stand in solidarity.
Labor unions did not begin with grand schemes for
millions of workers. They began with a few people
saying, “If you treat my coworker like that, you won’t
have me to push around anymore.” In place after place,
mostly poor and powerless people saw that their only
power was solidarity with one another. We need to know today what it means to stand in
solidarity, to remember our oneness. We need to
remember that what hurts one of us will eventually
hurt all of us, that what is benefit to one is a benefit to
us all. We need to remember that much can be
accomplished when we stand in solidarity.
(taken from St Robert Bellarmine church bulletin)

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