Rebuild with local power
The power of the destruction wreaked by the June 1 tornado has been matched and surpassed by the power of the first responder and myriad of local community volunteers who have provided aid and comfort to the victims.
There has been a unified spirit throughout our communities that has been a joy to behold.
Now as we seek to rebuild neighborhood by neighborhood, we need this to be a continuation of that unified spirit.
The unemployment rate in Western Massachusetts is at a high not seen in decades. The rebuilding effort provides an opportunity to put local community members to work. We should use local contractors and local workers to raise and revive our broken and battered businesses, schools, government buildings, homes and trees.
I implore on our public and private leaders to ensure that Western Massachusetts residents come first in being awarded rebuilding contracts and jobs.
We pay the taxes, we built this community, give our community residents the opportunity to put back the pieces of our buildings and our lives.
Richard M. Brown, President
Pioneer Valley Central Labor Council AFL-CIO