YSU faculty pondering strike disrespect public

YSU faculty pondering strike disrespect public

Recent articles and editorials have provided information related to contract negotiations at YSU. Obviously these writings, while factual, were written from YSU-OEA’s perspective that presents a heavily biased viewpoint. What they are proposing is that they be paid more money for doing less work. Wouldn’t we all like that?

What YSU-OEA fails to mention is that their members work a significantly shorter work week and year than other state employees, and most Ohioans, while drawing an average salary of over $72,000. It’s important to remember that these are state employees, not just employees of the university and the taxpayers contribute to their salaries.

A professor’s work week averages less than 30 hours per week (think mid-20s), providing that their grading tasks are not being performed by a graduate assistant or that the class isn’t online where the students teach themselves. What state trooper, mental health specialist or environmentalist wouldn’t like that?

Astonishingly, these professors believe they should teach fewer hours, further reducing their work week, and get more pay. The prevailing trend in employment is that if you want more pay, you do more work – not less! They also forgot to mention that once tenured, there is virtually no reason for which they can be removed regardless of how ineffective or uninspiring they are or even whether they fail to fulfill the requirements of their negotiated contract. And on top of these conditions, they need organized labor protection? Really??

The saddest part of this equation is that these entitlement-minded, job-for-life employees think somehow they’re being disrespected. They want you to believe that somehow it’s about improving the university or doing something for the students, but it’s really about greed.

Perhaps the whole tenure concept needs to be re-evaluated. If YSU-OEA really cares about the students, they would lead the effort. Don’t hold your breath waiting on that to happen. Being the lowest paid of a pampered group of lavishly paid, less-than-full-time employees isn’t being disrespected. Raising the salaries of the lowest paid just incentivizes the next group who becomes the lowest paid to insist on pay increases. This approach perpetuates artificial salary inflation.

It’s the taxpayers who are being disrespected and who should consider striking.

Karl Hart, Canfield

Greene’s edict on Browns security ignores real issue

Mahoning Coun- ty Sheriff Jerry Greene’s decision on providing security at Cleveland Browns games turns a blind eye on the real issue.

Sheriff Greene decided not to send 10 to 15 deputies to assist with security at the games because several of the team’s players kneeled during the national anthem.

It is their right to protest the killing of young unarmed black men and women by white law-enforcement officers across this country. It has nothing whatsoever to do with disrespecting those who served, and it has nothing to do with being anti-patriotic.

It goes without saying until you’ve walked in my shoes, Sheriff Greene will never understand what it’s like to be black and singled out by overzealous white police officers when confronted by a young black man or woman. I believe the dynamics are never the same as when a white person is confronted by law enforcement; the outcome never ends in the suspect being murdered. Period.

Until Sheriff Greene and others like him can see the bigger picture and understand the reasons behind the silent protest, nothing will change. Sheriff Greene’s double talk reminds me of what the native American Indians referred to as speaking with “a forked tongue.”

Rev. Charles F. Ellis, Youngstown

Ohio should get rid of harmful HIV law

As HIV clinicians practicing in Ohio, we write with concern regarding the Sept. 9 editorial in The Vindicator, titled “High court should preserve HIV- assault law in Ohio.”

We urge for Ohio’s HIV criminal statute to be updated to reflect the current science regarding HIV transmission and lifesaving HIV medical advances. The HIV treatment available today is highly effective at suppressing the virus, and when individuals with HIV are virally suppressed, their risk of transmitting the virus drops to near zero.

With early and reliable access to treatment, individuals with HIV are living healthier with a near normal life expectancy. The CDC reported in 2014 that deaths in the U.S. attributed to HIV dropped to just over 6,700. New HIV diagnoses in Ohio declined from 1,028 in 2012 to 982 in 2016, and nationwide new HIV infections declined by 18 percent from 2008 to 2014.

Furthermore, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that more than 90 percent of new HIV infections come from people not in care for their HIV infection. By perpetuating stigma and discrimination, the current law is a deterrent to the early diagnosis and treatment of HIV that is so important to keep individuals healthy and to reduce the spread of HIV.

Instead of maintaining this harmful outdated and ineffective law, we urge a focus on promoting early diagnosis and treatment of HIV. This will result in virtually no risk of transmitting the infection to those not infected and further control of this longstanding epidemic.

Drs. Barbara Grisphover and Alan Taege, Cleveland

Vision problems lead to increase in falls

In recognition of Ohio Falls Prevention Day on Sept. 22, Prevent Blindness encourages everyone to consider the risk that poor vision poses in contributing to falls. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related hospitalization and death among Ohioans age 65 and older, and they are largely preventable.

According to a 2016 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 52 percent of Ohio adults age 65 or older with severe vision impairment fell at least once in 2014 as compared with 28 percent of those without severe vision impairment. Unfortunately, those with impaired vision are more likely to experience falls and injuries.

Visual impairment, which can include decreased visual acuity, contrast sensitivity, depth perception and/or visual field, has been found to influence the risk of falls. Vision impairment can affect balance. It also increases the risk of tripping or misjudging steps, stairs or curbs.

Because people with vision impairments are more than twice as likely to fall as those without, keeping a regular schedule of eye examinations with an eye-care professional can help avoid debilitating falls in the future.

We hope that by alerting the public to the dangers of falls, as well as educating them on ways to avoid them, we can help prevent unnecessary injuries.

Sherry Williams, Columbus

Sherry Williams is president and CEO of the Ohio Affiliate of Prevent Blindness.

Enough with the gloom and doom of anti-frackers

I think it’s high time these snow-cone supporters of this anti-fracking Bill of Rights movement in Youngstown take the pacifiers out of their mouths and grow up.

The oil and gas industry will bring an economic boom to Youngstown that we have not seen since the steel industry collapsed in the late 1970s. Wake up, people, when the natural-gas industry reignites, Youngstown will become the nucleus of a thriving industrial center creating thousands of good-paying jobs.

To make this happen, we must have officials who have the vision to see past the next day, not shallow-minded individuals who have nothing but doom and gloom to talk about.

Jim Eidel, Beaver Township

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