Government Unions stop volunteers

March 11th, 2009 by Ken

Government employee unions have a negative effect on taxpayers.   They don’t care one whit for the public and the cost, they only care about what benefits they can get for their members.

But government unions impact us on another level.  They stop the general public from volunteering.

Take fire fighters unions as an example.   Time was in this country when anyone who cared about his community would become a volunteer fireman.  It was the ultimate form of volunteering because it saved lives as well as property.

You’ll find now, particularly in some areas, that volunteer fire fighters are fewer and fewer and that’s due almost completely to unionized fire fighters.  Lacey Fire District 3 used to be composed primarily of volunteer firemen.  Now, one can’t be found.

Volunteer fire fighters threaten the jobs and livelihood of union members.  Why hire more unionized fire fighters when you can simply get volunteer fire fighters for nothing?  That’s what the unions said.  Why should we allow volunteers when our jobs are at stake?

What unions did was lobby the legislature to pass laws making it more difficult for volunteers.  Now, if you want to be a volunteer fire fighter, you have to take hours and hours of training.   You have to have almost as many hours of training as does a professional fire fighter.

Not only does it cost the volunteer a lot of money, it also takes so much time that many people who want to be a volunteer can’t spend the time or money necessary to do so.  

And that’s just what the unions wanted.

Or, take librarians for example.  Right here in the Timberland Regional Library system all of the librarians in a five county area are unionized.   Now the cost of providing library service has climbed significantly since the force has become unionized.

The recent levy lid election was due primarily to the fact that Timberland wanted to pay their unionized workers more money – the taxpayers be damned.

More significantly the number of people working as volunteers at your local library has declined significantly every since librarians have become unionized.   Every volunteer takes away a job that could have gone to a union members and so there are less and less volunteers at your local library.

Government unions are no good for the taxpayer or for those who want to volunteer to help their community.

(A similar commentary ran this week on KGY Radio.)

Posted in Government, Informational, The Real News

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