Labour unions expanded the middle class
Re: Benns’ Belief on unions in the February Advocate.
Excellent piece. I find it completely baffling that Kawartha Lakes would ever vote Conservative given the demographics of this city. The labour unions are what has expanded the middle class. People seem to forget that private companies and corporations are in business to make a profit for the owners and shareholders.
Profit is achieved by efficiencies and lower costs. Both factors are achieved at the expense of the worker. A corporation or private company’s objective is to pay the workers the least and demand to most. The Conservative Party supports this model. They demonize labour as being too strong or being ‘controlled by the union bosses. Their main objective is to get rid of unions so the corporate and private owners can have cheap labour.
The current provincial government, represented locally by Laurie Scott, cancelled the basic income pilot program. They froze minimum wage; they pay health care workers a shameful wage. They also hate regulations aimed at protecting workers and providing safe working conditions.
The union movement is there for the workers. It has provided reasonable wages, safe working conditions, health benefits and often a decent pension. Unions need to be strong to counterbalance the political and corporate philosophy of maximizing profit at the expense of the worker.
Wayne Medford, Lindsay