This is in response to a letter by Paul Lowell published April 26. He wrote that he has no use for unions, doesn’t think the Employee Free Choice Act is needed and would never work union again.
I work in the same paper mill and know we were a union facility long before Lowell came here, yet he accepted the good wages, work rules and benefits that the union had negotiated. When he says he has no use for unions, he is talking about all his co-workers, because that is what makes a union. It is not a foreign body.
A union is made from a group of workers who agree to work together to speak with one voice in order to bargain for better wages, hours, and working conditions. The union officers are workers from within the mill, elected to represent their peers.
I am a volunteer organizer on organizing campaigns and have seen the abuse workers receive when they try to organize. I’ve witnessed workers fired, coerced, and fed a bunch of lies by their employers. One supplier hired lawyers to fight formation of another union and drag out negotiations that prevented workers from being represented in this democratic process.  
If Lowell does not wish to be a hypocrite, he should quit the mill and go work nonunion. He wrote he never witnessed anyone trying to join a union, so maybe he should only write about something that he has knowledge of.  
Ron Hemingway, Dixfield


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