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Unions’ ‘unwinnable’ fight vs. National Grid is one they can’t afford to lose

I wish to thank Katie Johnston and the Globe for coverage of the union employees’ valiant struggle to fight corporate greed and union-busting on the part of National Grid (“Unions go old-school in fight with utility,” Page A1, Sept. 11).

As a retiree from Boston Gas, Eastern Enterprises, Keyspan, and now National Greed, I put in more than three decades on the job as a proud member of Local 12003.

Conventional wisdom says we are fighting an unwinnable battle to keep hard-won benefits that most other workers have already lost. The current state of America is one of rabid capitalism and unchecked corporate exploitation of labor. Despite record profits and worker productivity, we’re seeing fewer benefits and stagnant wages.


This David vs. Goliath struggle isn’t trendy, nor is it widely appreciated. We don’t just fight the battles we can probably win; we fight the battles we feel all workers cannot afford to surrender. If not for the unions, who will fight the good fight? Should we just give up and be glad we have a job? It’s more courageous and honorable to get your butt kicked standing up for what’s right than to roll over and play dead.

The labor movement, historically led by unions, is the champion of the people in the constant struggle for economic and social justice. We invite all Americans to join us in the fight.

Charlie Backus

Old Orchard Beach, Maine