To the editor:
I agree with the editorial in the Daily Mining Gazette about the Upper Big Branch Mine in West Virginia, where 29 miners died. The writer doesn't understand all the issues in my opinion. The inspectors of the mine are employees of the state, with powers to report safety violations.
Small penalties and fines are just an expense of doing business with big organizations. The workers knew the dangers of their job, and this being a non-union mine, they are put under pressure to work or lose their job.
Safety issues are forgotten, production comes first. A strong union gives workers the right to refuse work in unsafe conditions without fear of losing their jobs. Twenty-nine dead at one time makes big news. One dead on a small job is just as terrible, but they do not make the headlines.
(State Rep.) Matt Huuki (R-Atlantic Mine) and (State Sen.) Tom Casperson (R-Escanaba) are our legislators in Lansing who want to do away with regulations in the workplace, therefore stimulating the economy by making it easier for businesses to operate.
Regulations (and) inspections are needed for all workers. Workers need to return home to their family after a workday, not die because of unsafe conditions.
The Daily Mining Gazette welcomes letters to the editor from readers.
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The Daily Mining Gazette had an article stating Matt Huuki wanted to lower regulations for nursing homes and daycare centers. Really, Matt? would you want your children in a daycare center without regulations or your aging family in a nursing home without any regulations?
Tom Casperson said no for funding for childhood programs, while giving tax breaks to corporations. Why?
Matt Huuki and Tom Casperson work for the residents of the Western Upper Peninsula of Michigan, not to be "yes men" to Lansing's wishes.