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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

We are union shop in the Midwest. Wanted to check to see if there were any union guys on the site.

Regards,

PaintSub
 

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Born 2 Paint
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Longtime Union Painter here. Also vested, but doing my own non-union thing these days in residential repaints.
 

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Born 2 Paint
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ill answer this one........



no, and i also dont tell them who to vote for either
Lol Yeah, no doubt. What the heck was I thinking? What employee in their right mind would want a fair wage, health insurance and a pension? :blink: All my years as a Union Painter I dont recall anyone ever telling me who to vote for? Have you ever even been a Union member? If not you really dont have much to go by do you? :rolleyes:
 

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Lol Yeah, no doubt. What the heck was I thinking? What employee in their right mind would want a fair wage, health insurance and a pension? :blink: All my years as a Union Painter I don't recall anyone ever telling me who to vote for? Have you ever even been a Union member? If not you really dont have much to go by do you? :rolleyes:
Ok, I'm trying to hold my breath on this one. "Fair wage", paying a ditch digger 22 bucks a hour, a preper 18 buck, a painter 38, is fair? Fair to who, the laborer? the employer? while our country in the private sector is taking cuts, cutting cost, losing jobs, going broke. the tax burden is on us the private sector (36.2% of labors are union) to pay these so called fair wages, health insurance and over whelming pension plans. Though I believe in employee rights, I believe the unions have taken advantage of those rights to line the pockets. All the mean while the business (non union and union) is taking the blunt of the responsibilities, yet union workers escaping their own responsibility. what happen to earn your way, plan for your own future, pride and dignity has been striped by this take care of me mentality, which is crippling our nation as whole. I am 100% anti union, because it is NOT about employee right, which I am 100% for. But it is ultimate liberalism, dictatorship of your future all in the name of "rights" "for your protection". Fend for yourself rather than pay a boss man to fend for you. The easy way would be to go union. Yet they seem to be jobless ATM go figure.
 

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As a union worker would you vote for a candidate that will protect your employee rights or would you vote for the candidate that would protect your constitutional rights?
 

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Born 2 Paint
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Go back to the first original post. All the guy did was ask if anyone here is Union? Did I come in and dis the non union contractor? No I didnt. Rest assured, I worked my way through the ranks as a painter. Union scale for a journeyman painter here in Portand Oregon is $20 hr. Is that unfair? Health insurance for our families? Is that unfair too? My pension I worked hard for over the years? All the guy asked was "Are there any Union guys here" He didnt ask your opinion on unions.
 

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Born 2 Paint
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I would like to appoloqize to the original poster and the mods. However, I will not sit still when someone who doesnt even know me do what I consider a personal attack against me when he tells me to grow some balls and work my way up through the ranks. I have more than paid my dues in this trade over the last 30 years. I do not get what has been going on here lately? Maybe this place has always been crazy, but its apparent only a small handful post here regularly. I cant imagine why? I am a very nice guy. I do not bother anyone and generally avoid the BS drama here. I came here a year ago looking for any advice for my new business. I am more than happy to help any other painter. Too bad this has to happen over a simple question? "Any union guys here?" Yes, I am a longtime Union Painter. Nothing has ever been handed to me. I have always worked my ass off. I worked very hard for many years for some great Union employers. Today I get to see my former Union employers at PDCA meetings. My reward for my hard work over the years is a home that is paid for with no morgage and a pension waiting on me. If that makes me a bad guy so be it.
 

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I could see all this comming from the first post......

Wood, if you come back to read this, let it go. Some people obviously have stronger opinions of unions whether for or against, than others. Myself, I'm not a union type guy, though I can see the benefits that it does provide. I think the thing is, is that most of the guys who are business owners don't want another "agency" telling them what they can/can't/must do.

If we can keep this civil, I'll use my past company as an example. Feel free to disagree, but try and keep an open mind where I'm comming from as these are just facts and experiences that I went through.

My employees were paid an hourly rate that I felt was in line with their experience and production. I didn't use union guidelines for pay but I was within the union pay grades within + or - a buck an hour. I think if I averaged in all cash bonuses, holiday bonuses, free tools, clothing, etc., I was probably higher. Keep in mind I was also an employee at a stage in this trade, and I also knew what it took to live a decent lifestyle instead of just surviving.

Health insurance and pensions - I had quotes from three different companies to have my employees covered. All required a substantial contribution from the employees that I would have had to match. I was willing to do so with no problem, however the employees chose not to participate once they saw what their portion would be deducted from their checks on a weekly basis. I couldn't force them to participate. I did increase their pay in the event that they chose to get insurance on their own. I seriously doubt any of them did. Pensions were not an option due to the fact that most of the employees, for some reason or another, choose to move on. If they were to take their cash/Christmas bonuses over the course of a year and invest it, I think they would probably have done alright. I think I had one or two over the years who actually took a couple hundred a month and put into some sort of retirement fund. I couldn't nor did I have any inclination to try and force any sort of fiscal discipline on them. They were adults.

I didn't get wealthy off the backs of my employees. I got wealthy because I knew how to have good basic business sense and I diversified the services I offered. It took me more than a few years to build an equipment and tool inventory that the employees could use. We all know that these aren't one-time purchases, rather they continue throughout the life of the business.....and some of the stuff ain't cheap. LOL On the other hand I knew that I needed to have high production and quality work on a daily basis. As a business owner, if that meant getting rid of the "fat" as needed, I did so. I couldn't afford to have someone just put in their 40 hours without production backing it up. If that was the case, it was imperative that I have the decision rights to either counsel or fire as needed, without worrying about any recourse.

(On a personal note, there were more than a few times I have helped employees through unforeseen financial mishaps/crises. A few times they got checks, when they didn't work due to illness or family emergencies. A few times, I filled the cupboards, helped with furniture, etc., for the newbies starting out. This all came out of my pocket....my personal pocket, not the business. Over the years, I can honestly say, it's come to some major bucks. I don't look back on it with any remorse.)

Do all companies operate this way? Of course not. Just as there are questionable unions and union chapters, there are plenty of questionable employers.....more than plenty.

I take it you are now on the course of owning your own business. You now have an idea of what it takes to support yourself and your family by the business you generate on your own. When you start to grow with multiple employees, you'll realize the income you'll have to generate in order to survive, much less provide union type benefits to your employees. It ain't easy in these times my friend.

Wolf
 

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PinheadsUnite
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Almost closed this thread, so consider this a warning.

Keep it CIVIL, respectful, and factual. No politics, no flames, no inflamatory opinions!!!


I am not a big lover of Unions, but they were necessary to gain some worker rights when the robber barons were running sweat shops and endangering their workers.

I know some Union painters who have done proud by their union and the profession. I also know some Union laborers who take advantage of the system.

As with everything in society, the Unions are filled both with good apples and bad eggs.
 

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Thanks Bill, I agree with you. I was about to edit until I read Wolf's thoughtful post, thank you Wolf.

Woodland, I hope your comment about leaving was just out of frustration. I have enjoyed your posts, and watching you grow your business, to me, that is what Nathan's original intention of PT is for, and I look forward to seeing more from you. (and don't you want to be part of the "clicky";))

Just like in real life, there are going to be opinions and people that we do not agree with, or like, and while it is admirable to be passionate about certain things, we just can't expect (nor desire) everyone to feel the same way.

Some of the best threads here come from the diverse opinions held, it is only when we start taking things personally or believing another's opinion is wrong that the threads turn to crap.
 
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