Don’t Put Manners on Strike at the Picket Line

No one wants a strike.  Striking is a last resort when an agreement cannot be made by an organization and its workers.  Employees do not want to relinquish their pay cheques to walk a picket line and employers don’t want to loose the labour.  Any public involved do not want the inconvenience of lost production, services or having to cross that picket line.  As unpleasant as they are, sometimes they are a necessary evil in order to move forward.  When presented with a strike situation, there a few things to keep in mind:

1. They are people on those picket lines.  They have feelings, families and lives.

2.  Expect delays if you are crossing the line.  Often, workers will stop line-crossers to hand out brochures or explain their side of the situation.  Be patient and keep conversation pleasant.

3.  Drive slowly when crossing a line with a vehicle.  Hitting the gas pedal, squealing tires or driving erratically is only putting people’s lives in danger and isn’t going to improve the situation.  Not-to-mention, it is unlawful and could end up being a bigger problem than just trying to make a statement crossing the line.

4.  Waving the middle finger at picketers or yelling obscenities only serves to discredit you.

5.  Under normal circumstances, honking of horns can be obnoxious and annoying but there is no sweeter sound to a picketer than the sound of a honk of support.  A quick “beep beep” on the horn and a wave means so much to a person who is walking the line.

6.  Safety should be the number one priority for all involved.  Tolerance, restraint and respect are critical.  Everyone has the right to an opinion but no has the right to take away the safety and security of another.

7.  Be polite and courteous at all times.  The person who can civilly disagree is heard more clearer than the one screaming and mud-slinging.

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