Unions have historically improved the lives of harshly treated workers such as in the steel, coal, meat packing and other industries. However, the pendulum swings both ways. Unions have also adversely impacted industries in demanding wages and benefits that make products overpriced and protecting members who need to be fairly disciplined. The United Auto Workers come to mind.
I don’t like unions in the public sector. In 1983, President Reagan fired striking air traffic controllers and I admired him for that. Anchorage taxpayers pay a lot for the services we get and like other cities, such as in Wisconsin, the price is getting out of hand. One exception: police and fire. Cops are in danger every day on the streets except for the desk jockeys like sergeants and lieutenants.
Firemen face danger less often but we saw their courage in action on 9/11 and we’ll see it here on a similar scale someday, given our restless geology.
I favor what the mayor is attempting and the city economy will benefit from it
— William Ahrens