Before moving to Oregon I worked in New York City as project manager at a company doing high-end renovations. Our company employed non-union labor. On one job the union forced (they would throw out or impede our material deliveries if we didn't comply) us to take on two union workers. These two workers proceeded to do no work, while being billed at twice the rate of our workers. While on site they tried to get the other workers to join the union.
I very much support a workers right to a safe workplace and ample pay. The problem I see with unions, at least in the construction field, is that it creates an adversarial relationship between the company and the employee and relieves the worker of their responsibility to do quality work while paying them huge amounts of money. In my company in new york we had amazing workers who shared the same goal as the company: to provide excellent quality work. And my company rewarded them for it.
Another very interesting side of unions that I saw in new york was that they had worked themselves into a position so that all new buildings had to be constructed with union labor. Even if someone purchased an apartment before completion, and planned to gut the place and renovate it, the union workers had to finish the job. Afterward we would come in and tear out all the work and start again. It just seemed like such a huge waste, and I guess that's the impression that unions have left with me.
posted 4 years, 3 months ago
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