Printed on: December 13, 2012

Stand with unions

Received Dec. 5

Being in the electric utility industry for the past 32 years, and as a former lineman, I appreciate Bob Ziel's recent column. I would like to add that the employees of both organizations mentioned are also proud members of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). The utility business is a 24/7/365-day operation and the employees respond to the call, whether it is a small outage or one on the magnitude of 11/25. In this business, there may not be a weekend or holiday to enjoy due to emergencies that may arise. The majority of these emergencies happen during adverse weather conditions and during nighttime hours. These highly trained individuals, most completing four-year Joint IBEW Apprentice Programs, respond to the call, heading into danger while most stand back or move away. Two of my union brothers from eastern Idaho have been severely injured or killed doing their job in the past year. Away from work, these proud union members volunteer their time providing meals at the City of Refuge, adopting families during the holidays, providing assistance at local shelters, food drives, donating blood, working at their respective churches and working with area conservation groups on projects throughout eastern Idaho. The list could go on and on. While some choose to bash the unions in their letters and columns, I chose to proudly stand with my IBEW brothers and sisters, along with all unions who strive to improve the middle class and who help those less fortunate. (Word count: 246)

S.A. Long

Idaho Falls