Played by the rules

Rep. Brownsberger,

You said in the posting the Unions played by the rules but you have chosen to change them and that is not good faith bargaining.  I read your posting that because you are a legislator, you can change the rules.  As a union member who has negotiated contracts for my local, I played by the rules.  However, the mayors with this change do not have to play by the rules because you chose to give the advantage to the city and town officials.  You disrespect for those who work for the state, city and towns shows we are second class citizens since you can change the rules after we played by the rules of collective bargaining.

I encourage all union members to remember  the next time you are up for reelection and vote against those who disregard the rules of collective bargaining.  For years, you ask the unions for their vote and we have loyally stayed with the Democratic party because the GOP are even more cut throat and anti worker than you.  Now is the time for the union to find candidates who believe in fair play and the rules of collective bargaining.  You hid behind tough economic times to cripple the labor movement.

Your reasoning is a disappointment and just an excuse to beef up management rights at the expense of the working class people of the Commonwealth.


Published by loisjacobs

Retired teacher. Active still in union activity.

5 replies on “Played by the rules”

  1. “Second class citizens” . . . “cripple the labor movement” . . . I know people are upset, but this rhetoric goes too far. The majority of the people in the state are making much less than the workers who are affected by these changes. The median straight time earnings in the state are about 20% below the median earnings of most kinds of municipal employees. Follow this link for more details.

    Municipal employees do valuable and important work. There is nothing disrespectful about the changes that we’ve made.

  2. The workers who are not unionized have been battered around by management. Those workers have lost pensions, affordable health insurance and any job security. Those who are in unions have some recourse to the whims of the bosses. The white collar worker frankly has been run over for the bottom line of profits. We make choices on professions. Some of us work within a union environment that provides protection. Perfect example of a once great place to work: Polaroid. Dr. Land was a great inventor and boss. When the company was turned over to a new management team, Polaroid was destroyed. Look on Route 128 to see the destruction of greedy management. Polaroid workers trusted Dr. Land and never felt a need to form a union. When he was pushed out, it was too late for the workers and the retirees and those who worked for years lost pensions and health.

    Don’t start praising the joys of the private sector. You make a choice of professions. Rep Brownsberger, you chose to serve the Commonwealth. You could have gone into private industry. You are entitled to a decent health insurance policy and a pension when you leave service. I am proud of a Commonwealth that cares for the those who chose a public job. We are not going to work for nothing because we simply can’t afford to pay for food, clothing, insurance and energy on our good intentions. Don’t compare the private and public. It is apples and oranges.

  3. I had a lovely long conversation a few weeks ago with a friend whose father was a union leader in a small single-plant town in the last century. Neither the plant nor the workers had any place else to go. So every few years there was a strike and the share of the pie got divvied up between the bosses and the workers. My friend’s father fought for his workers and took care of them in every way that he could.

    As in every era, there are today, some greedy superficial people in our economy who only care about financial manipulation, not about actually making things or helping people. But I think that the narrative of unions fighting with bosses over the pie is largely a narrative from the last century. There are smart, driven people all over the world who are happy to work for less than we do and the competition is killing a lot of American businesses, unionized or not. That’s why we are all tussling over a shrinking pie in this country. Technology change is part of the problem too — Polaroid went under because of technology change, not just because of new management.

    In the face of globalization and technology change, most of us have to accept some adjustments in life style.

  4. I’m voting against you today because of these issues. We need single-payer health care, not stripping collective bargaining rights, and you should be putting your energy and intelligence to work on making a difference for everyone, not trying to weaken unions. I have been very disappointed in you and your party. Maybe Schofield or McCarthy can do better.

  5. I’m all about controlling health care costs for everyone! That’s the next big bill in the legislature and I look forward to working on it from the Senate side. But it’s not an either/or. We had to do the municipal health care reform and I still feel it was very fair. Hope you’ll read through some of the other discussion on this issue.

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