I thank Gov. Paul LePage and the new majority leadership in Augusta for the wake-up call.
This governor came into office and the first thing he did was sucker punch organized labor right in the mouth. He gave marching orders to his majority to attack organized labor and Maine workers at every turn.
Their first act was to remove the labor mural from the walls of the Department of Labor. Then they turned on the Maine state workers by attacking their earned pension. They repealed the right to form a union for workers at DeCoster’s and other factory egg farms, rolled back child labor laws which protect Maine’s minors, made it more difficult to get by for workers with the most severe on-the-job injuries by limiting workers' compensation, passed a bill that punishes laid-off workers, repealed collective bargaining rights for child care providers, and made it easier to classify workers as “independent contractors” instead of employees — which means workers go without the protections of basic labor laws, workers' compensation and unemployment insurance.
It is too bad it took these attacks to wake us up and revive a sense of true solidarity in Maine organized labor. So now that we’re awake, we shall keep fighting all the way to November.
Danny N. Loudermilk Jr., Auburn
Editor's note: Danny Loudermilk Jr. is president of Local S7, International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, Bath Iron Works