VANCOUVER—Metro Vancouver bus and SeaBus operators and maintenance workers will take a step toward a strike next Thursday after their union says talks broke down with their employer.
In a media release, Unifor, the union representing 5,000 bus and SeaBus workers said wages, benefits, and working conditions remained the top issues in their contract negotiations with Coast Mountain Bus Company, the operating company of TransLink that is responsible for bus and SeaBus services across Metro Vancouver.
In the release, Unifor Western Regional Director Gavin McGarrigle is quoted saying overcrowding of buses, such as on the 99 B-Line, is a sign of an ongoing understaffing issue, and that Coast Mountain Bus Company needs to hire more drivers to address the problem.
CMBC is hiring as bus routes expand as part of the 10-year Mayors’ Vision for transit expansion in the region. So far in 2019, 630 new operators have been hired and 440 operators were hired in 2018.
The workers will take a strike vote next Thursday. If they vote in favour, they will be poised to walk out after giving the employer and the Labour Relations Board 72 hours of notice.
In an email statement, TransLink said its operating company is still committed to reaching a negotiated agreement with the union.
“As of yesterday, the parties have stepped away from the bargaining table to determine their next steps. CMBC does not anticipate any disruption to service at this time,” a portion of the statement reads.
Mike Smith, president of the union local representing CMBC maintenance workers, said members would prefer to avoid strike action.
YOU MIGHT BE INTERESTED IN…
“Our members know that the public relies on them and it is our sincere hope that Coast Mountain comes back with a serious offer to avoid inconvenience to transit riders,” he said in the media release.
Coast Mountain Bus Company’s contract with the union expired in March.
Get more of today’s top stories in your inbox
Find everything you need to know about what’s happening in Vancouver in our Morning Headlines newsletter.
- Strike Vote For AMITA St. Joe's Nurses Set
- ‘Social distancing & sanitizing’: Georgia opens early voting
- Kochi Metro's first-ever trade union promises 'no hartal, no strikes'
- Too early to resume Metro service, says Delhi High Court
- Coronavirus: Muni slowly restores bus lines in parts of San Francisco
- Chaos on the forecourts? Nearly 8,000 petrol stations could shut after 2,000 Unite fuel drivers vote in favour of strike
- Is #DeleteUber Good for Workers' Rights?
- Overworked and mistrusted: Russia's medical workers risk their lives with little applause
- On your bike Sadiq! London Mayor Khan gets into the saddle after hiking congestion charge as capital's workers are told to ditch public transport to cycle to work instead (just a pity he has to be followed by his minders in £300,000 Range Rover)
- Deprived of work migrants want to return; request Maha-Metro to make travel arrangements
- Coronavirus live updates: Outbreak strikes seafood wholesaler in Morgan Hill
- BEST assures transport for essential service workers
Metro Vancouver bus workers move toward strike vote have 488 words, post on www.thestar.com at October 4, 2019. This is cached page on VietNam Breaking News. If you want remove this page, please contact us.