Just Bitchin’ – Unions & Public Sector

I’ve been  afraid to allow myself to embark on this subject – I get so hot under the collar I just might say some very inappropriate things.  However, an article in today’s “Ottawa Sun” has me at my computer, hoping to remain lady-like in my comments.

While I understand how unions came into being in the manufacturing world – how on earth did they ever get such a strangle hold in the public sector?  There has never been poor working conditions….there has never been mistreatment of staff (other than the occasional nasty superior which happens anywhere)…..there has always been (at least as long as I can remember) decent wages and more than decent benefits.  You only have to be sitting in a government department at 4:05 pm to know that, in general, nobody is asked to over-exert themselves!

I know….I know….there are always some exceptions – but I’ve been there – both as an employee and as a contractor!  I also spent 30 years in private sector (some of it as a contractor on public sector work sites).

Yet here we are, our public sector is union-driven.  Teachers are being encouraged to “work to rule” – goodness knows – if you stay after school to coach a sports team, or to help students in need of some extra time, you might make somebody else look bad.  Our municipal, provincial and federal workers – who get annual increases no matter how they do their jobs – feel over burdened.  Somebody has been telling them that working a 7.5 hour day with coffee breaks is hard labour.  A month in a private sector job would be a major eye-opener.

Sigh.  What I really want to say is that in today’s world (and especially in public sector), unions seem to be doing more harm than good.  They work for themselves, not for their members and certainly not for the greater good.  They use hard core tactics to ensure their survival (e.g. mandatory membership, mandatory picketing, etc).  They share, in large measure, with Dalton McGuinty, responsibility for the financial mess our province is in today.  They create and encourage an environment of “entitlement”.

Times have changed.  It is time for more change.


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