Collective bargaining danger warning issued

The issue has raised its ugly head once again at the East Baton Rouge Parish School Board: collective bargaining. (Can you say “teacher strikes?”) The unions must see a shot at a majority vote on this board and can’t help but make a power grab. Forget the children, parents and the public. The unions want to be the exclusive bargaining agent for all teachers and employees. Are our schools auto factories? Are our teachers now just better-dressed teamsters? I thought they wanted to be treated as professionals and paid accordingly? Well, does your doctor, lawyer, CPA or engineer belong to a union ... and go on strike?

If some teachers choose to join a union, so be it. They can have their union representative at the school board meetings to raise whatever issues concern them. But that union rep only has one seat at the table, just like every other interested party—including taxpayers. Collective bargaining would give the union rep the ONLY seat at the table with the board, and leave you out of the picture, despite it involving your child, your money and your community school system. The union members all have a right to vote on their school board members. Let those elected officials represent them along with all other parents and taxpayers.

Can the board possibly think collective bargaining is going to fix our schools? After just getting out from under the court’s desegregation order, do they really want their hands tied again by collective bargaining? Does any board member think this is going to improve their image in the eyes of the public, inspire confidence and build support?

A warning to the board: Approving collective bargaining is a step backward into the past and could cost you business and public support.


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