To Whom It May Concern:

I hope this letter finds our Union Officers, Union Members and their families healthy and well during these trying times.  I am writing this letter in response to an upcoming action the membership has decided to make about polling our members concerning an official stance by the Union on mandatory vaccines.  I wish to not preach my beliefs or my stance to you, nor to persuade an individual’s personal medical decision with excessive statistics or fear inducing examples.  I only wish to speak of why I have chosen to pursue union jobs for the past 14 years, and the role I believe it must play for each and every member.

When explaining to people outside of a union how it works, I fall back on one example:  We all know crap rolls downhill, and many of the represented members are sitting at the bottom of that hill.  The Union should serve as a retaining wall; not to stop all the crap from getting to us, but to slow it down enough to get our tall boots on before we have to step in it.  This wall is there protecting each and every member, with each brick paid for and placed with their dues.  To take an official stance on either side of this debate would alienate every member and deny the very representation of a workers’ individual rights the Union is there to protect.  This decision would be extremely divisive amongst our members, and ultimately I believe the inevitable downfall of our Local.  

So, are we willing to sacrifice the protection and rights of individual workers to a medical decision based on the opinions of neither legal nor medical professionals, with our brothers’ and sisters’ livelihood on the line?  Whether we proclaim pro or anti mandatory vaccines, then we have lost sight of our very purpose to our members, and by definition should no longer be called a Union.
– Chris Fielder, outside tech