Letter: The paper continues its history of anti-union views

Posted 11/27/19

There are certain recurring things in life that you can always set your clock by, such as long lines at the mall on Black Friday, hot and humid weather in July, and of course a regular bashing of …

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Letter: The paper continues its history of anti-union views

Posted

There are certain recurring things in life that you can always set your clock by, such as long lines at the mall on Black Friday, hot and humid weather in July, and of course a regular bashing of unionized public employees in the editorial section of this newspaper. And last week, the Phoenix kept up their track record with one of their constant anti-union editorials. The fact of the matter is the recent legislation passed by the General Assembly and signed into law by the governor was sorely needed, as unionized public employees are the most vital asset of any city and town, and the new law simply prevents local politicians from using their positions to bully and manipulate their teachers and public works employees.

Unionized police officers and firefighters have had the protection of binding arbitration laws for many years, and personally, I would like to have seen the legislature go a step further and expand the binding arbitration laws to also include teachers and public works employees.

I travel the country extensively, and have seen cities and towns where the police, firefighters, teachers, and public works employees are not covered by fair union contracts, and it's not a pretty sight. In those areas of the country, the caliber of public employees is substandard at best, and in some extreme cases, those workers receive salary and benefits comparable to those of a fast food restaurant employee.

Public health and safety should always be the highest priority of any city or town, and fortunately our legislators and governor had the foresight to realize that when they passed the recent legislation protecting unionized public employees. In addition, this legislation was needed now more than ever, when we're stuck with most anti-union president in the history of our country, and unfortunately a few local elected officials in our state share that anti-union sentiment and have attempted to emulate the president’s bias. 

So prepare yourselves, ladies and gentlemen, while just as you can set your clocks by cold, snow, and dreary weather this winter and flowers blooming in the spring, you can also expect more unionized public employee bashing by this newspaper. And speaking of this newspaper, perhaps the publishers may want to consider changing their name from the Bristol Phoenix to the Bristol Anti-Union. Seems like that name would be much more fitting.

Mike Proto
Bristol

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Jim McGaw

A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.