Local Connection: Treatment of employees should determine support

By Rick Blangiardi

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - In a time of tough labor talks here in Hawaii, let me ask you: Are you pro-union or pro-management?

I want to suggest to you that the only reasonable answer is: "It depends".

Companies, both union & non-union, can be good to their workers or they can mistreat them.  Unions can be astute negotiators for their members or represent them badly by being too aggressive or too weak.

Without being in the bargaining room, you really can't be sure if either side has cornered the market on who the good guys are.

The very nature of contract talks puts two sides at cross purposes.

The union's chief weapon is disruption.

The employer's chief weapon is delay.

The professional negotiators inside the room, they know this.

Local 5 is getting pressure from the national union and hotels are getting their plays called from their mainland owners.  So both sides are constrained in seeking a good local solution.

Let's hope they can find one anyway.

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