Legislature is harming workers
by our readers
Apr 10, 2012 | 1483 views |  0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Politicians from Montgomery to Washington talk about “job creation,” but their words do not match their deeds. The first two weeks of the legislative session this year were dedicated to “job creation.” Many bills were introduced to recruit or entice business and industry to Alabama. Attracting jobs is an important and commendable goal. But preserving the jobs we have and protecting the workers who do those jobs is equally important.

Instead, workers are being vilified. Firefighters, police officers, teachers and scores of others who are devoted public servants are being demonized by the same politicians who talk about creating jobs. When did work become a bad thing?

It is past time for the Alabama Legislature to protect the wages, benefits and rights in the workplace of those who work for a living. Over the last two years, public-sector employees have seen their benefits reduced or eliminated by the Legislature. These reductions affect local municipalities and the state in recruiting quality workers. They harm local economies by reducing the buying power of workers. If that’s not enough, bills have been introduced in the House of Representatives and Senate that will reduce retirement benefits for future employees. Working longer for less — that doesn’t sound like retirement security. Once again, Alabama is at the bottom of another list.

Our politicians talk about creating jobs. But all they are doing is creating a problem. If they continue to gut the wages and benefits of workers, even more Alabamans will be forced to rely on public assistance to survive. I don’t think that’s what they had in mind, but it’s as plain as day that that’s where the agenda of the extremists is taking us.

Randy Childs
Secretary/treasurer
Professional Fire Fighters of Alabama
Jacksonville
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