Another reader says: “The Democratic Party is no longer the party for [the] working man; it is the party for government public employee unions.”

This sentiment is often voiced here and in other forums when labor issues are discussed. It seems simplistic and simply wrong to me whenever I see it.

Before I ever got involved in politics, I was a high school teacher in Washington State. My involvement in the Washington Education Association led to my election as a local president, where I learned a lot about political organizing, coalition-building, and advocacy.

We weren’t just sitting at the table to negotiate salaries and benefits. Our teachers were also passionate and effective advocates for improving public education. Similarly, the employees of our local governments deserve to be heard when San Diegans are talking about how to provide good public services.

The rush to privatization is based on a profit model that doesn’t translate to a service model. The pervasive worker-bashing in San Diego does nothing to right the city’s finances, support the service and safety that residents expect, or help our imperiled middle class.

For the reasons cited in my first post, San Diego County is a real battleground for these issues politically. The county Democratic Party will absolutely flex its muscle to protect the interests of working families when voters go to the polls.

— JESS DURFEE

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