Something for nothing


In your Sept. 5 editorial, “Unions should only get the dues they deserve,” you ask: What if a worker doesn’t like the representation he or she gets from a union?

Well, if unions should only get the dues they deserve, I suggest that workers should only get the representation they deserve. Union dues pay for representation in the workplace — defending workers in grievance procedures, for example — and for contract bargaining.

If a worker doesn’t want to pay for this representation, the principled thing to do would be to reject it. Those who refuse to pay union dues should also refuse to accept wage increases bargained by the union, refuse health insurance and other benefits bargained by the union, and certainly reject any effort by the union to represent them if they are disciplined, suspended or fired.

Unions are required by law to represent workers whether they pay union dues or not. And workers get all the gains made in contract negotiations whether they pay dues or not. Workers who don’t want to pay dues for what they get from the union want something for nothing. They are freeloaders who want other workers to pay for what they receive from the union.

Is that the sort of behavior The Bulletin supports — people relying on others to pay their way so they can get something for nothing?

Michael Funke

Bend