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Senate, House Vote to Kill Work Rules

March 11, 2001

* Re "House Kills Worker Ergonomics Rules," March 8: So much for George W. Bush's concern for the working class. With his blessing, a bunch of congressional airheads--most of whom have probably never done hard physical labor in their lives--decided that ergonomics guidelines were too onerous for employers to live with.

As a career mail carrier I walked over 80,000 miles and sorted literally millions of pieces of mail in my 36 years. Most all of what I did was repetitive motion. I'm retired now and still lead an active life. But not a day goes by that I can get out of bed without my feet, knees, back, shoulders and hands hurting. I still enjoy my exercise, but I'm always playing in pain. Regular chiropractic visits and sports creams are now part of my life. And this is the real story behind this stupid decision. There are hundreds of thousands of blue-collar workers like me out there--some retired, some not. Most of us still lead active lives--just with daily pain caused in large part by the toll that repetitive motion jobs have taken on our bodies.

FRED SHAW

Carpinteria

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* If the working people of this country don't take this as a wake-up call to the fact that the current administration isn't concerned with their best interests, then nothing will. Business groups may have the insider's advantage to get these long-overdue regulations overturned, but the millions of individuals who will potentially be harmed by the latest example of Republican and corporate shortsightedness and greed will have a place to air their response in a couple of years: the voting booth.

MIKE LASKAVY

Oak Park

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