On March 27, CLC Investigator Barry Thorsteinson submitted an 11 page report to CLC President Hassan Yussuff on the ATU Local 113 crisis. His report notes that with the March 17 withdrawal of Bob Kinnear’s request for the CLC’s justification proceedings, the case ends with the filing of his report. No full investigation is to be conducted.ORIGINAL
The Thorsteinson report makes a number of preliminary findings. The first is that Unifor stands in violation of the CLC Constitution for its interference in this dispute. The report notes that the CLC will determine what response if appropriate.
Thorsteinson’s report also notes that the ATU has failed to cooperate fully with the justification process by ceaseless attempts to discredit the CLC and calls for the process to terminate. To a much lesser extent, during this investigation as described earlier is two specific instances of refusals to cooperate by withholding requested information.
The report also finds that President Yussuff and the CLC were not involved in any plot to assist Kinnear, or Unifor, in the justification process.
Hassan Yussuff sent a letter along with a copy of the report to the affiliates. In that brief letter he notes the investigator cleared the CLC and that he calls for unions to strengthen the Article 4 protocol.
People gathered on the steps of Saskatchewan’s legislature Thursday to protest the government’s impending closure of the Saskatchewan Transportation Company.
The rally was organized by the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1374, the union representing the employees whose jobs will be eliminated when the service closes by the end of May.
“We don’t elect governments, we un-elect governments, so Mr. Wall, remember that,” ATU Local 1374 president Eric Carr told the crowd.
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Demonstrators, including labour and student groups, called on the government to reverse its decision to scrap the provincial bus company, saying that in addition to employees who will be out of work, rural residents and low-income earners who depend on the service will be hurt by the cut.
The final days for the Saskatchewan Transportation Company (STC) are ticking down, but pleas to save it have not stopped.
The Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1374 organized a rally on the front steps of the Saskatchewan Legislative Building and were joined by members of CUPE, SEIU West, Students Mobilizing Against Cuts, Regina Anti-Poverty Ministry, seniors, STC riders and STC operators to call on the government to rethink its decision to decommission the STC.
Ken Younghans has been an operator for more than 20 years and although he will soon be unemployed, his main concern is about the people who ride the bus.
“I’m not happy I’m losing my job, but in the same respect, I can find another job. But the people in this province are not going to get the same quality of service they have been getting for the past 71 years,” he said after the rally. “As a taxpayer I think what this government is doing is appalling. It’s disrespectful and I think they need to wake up and smell the coffee because they are hurting a lot of people. They are hurting the people who voted them in — the rural people.”
Younghans is worried about what will happen to those who depend on the bus like seniors, the isolated and the sick.
Friday, April 28, 2017, is the National Day of Mourning. We at ATU Canada remember those who have lost their lives or suffered an injury or illness on the job.
ATU Canada remembers and honours all fallen workers, and we fight for increased safety in the workplace.
Winnipeg transit advocates are hoping an event series could spark a movement calling for improved bus service in the City of Winnipeg.
Advocates who are worried transit is “very rarely talked about in Winnipeg” have a plan to change that this year; it involves “humanizing transit” for riders, city councillors, and soon, a new transit director.
Joseph Kornelsen, who chairs the citizen group Functional Transit Winnipeg, said outside of safety concerns and rapid bus lines, decision-makers and Winnipeggers alike seldom look critically at the city’s existing transit service.
He explained how that lack of widespread criticism and the notion that “we’re a car town because that’s what Winnipeg was built for,” has siphoned momentum off support for a better public transportation system.
The result has been, by Kornelsen’s assessment, an underfunded, infrequent service that doesn’t serve people as well as it could on many of its often circuitous routes.
“So what we’re trying to do is reframe the conversation so we’re talking about how the service actually works,” Kornelsen said. “We want to bring to the forefront what it means to have a good service, show people what an effective transit service looks like.
Ever since the fatal assault of a transit operator in early 2017, the local transit union has been calling for more dedicated transit police.
The union representing transit drivers has learned Winnipeggers share its desire for more dedicated police riding city buses.
Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) local President John Callahan said it’s telling that a “broad range” of residents surveyed for Probe Research between March 13 and 28 support the union’s call for increased enforcement.
“It seems to be that people using transit as well as people who are not using it hear what’s going on and understand the issue,” Callahan said, referencing the “almost daily occurrence” of operator assaults, which were brought into the public eye after one such assault in February had fatal consequences.
Of the 600 adults polled, Callahan said the fact 64 per cent agree a dedicated transit police force is needed means the union’s call for such protection isn’t just anecdotal, and wouldn’t just be welcomed by drivers who fear for their safety.
“We wanted these real numbers,” he said. “They speak for themselves.”
A recent decision that paves the way for the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) to begin randomly testing its workers for drug and alcohol use later this month is problematic on multiple levels, and could lead to discrimination against employees, Toronto labour, employment, and human rights lawyer Christopher Achkar tells The Lawyer’s Daily.
As the article notes, in Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 113 v. Toronto Transit Commission 2017 ONSC 2078, Ontario Superior Court Associate Chief Justice Frank Marrocco dismissed an application from the transit workers’ union for an injunction against an amendment to its “Fitness for Duty Policy” during arbitration.
The policy implements drug and alcohol testing of employees in safety-sensitive, management and executive positions, says The Lawyer’s Daily.
According to the ruling, this testing will deter people prone to using drugs or alcohol around their hours of work, which will increase public safety, the article reports.
A Peterborough Transit driver was sent home without pay because she refused to drive a bus with the controversial pro-life ads, says her union – a claim that one city director has refuted.
A grievance was filed by the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1320 and obtained by The Examiner. It calls for compensation for the driver who was sent home.
The grievance says the driver – a woman – was assigned to work overtime on April 4, the first day that pro-life ads appeared on the exterior of two buses.
“Her assigned bus featured anti-abortion ads which she found offensive, discriminated against her and poisoned her workplace,” states the grievance.
It also says the driver feared she would face “vexatious” comments from the public.
“She was removed from her assignment and sent home without pay,” the grievance states.
One city official says that’s inaccurate.
Wayne Jackson, the city’s public works director, spoke about the issue because transportation manager Kevin Jones was unavailable for comment.
Jackson said the driver had accepted an overtime shift, but then balked when she was expected to drive the bus with the controversial ad.
She declined the overtime, Jackson said, and another driver took the shift in her place.
“No one was sent home – she chose not to do the overtime work,” he said. “Now she’s decided she should get paid (for work not done).”
But Tyler Burns, the president of the union, doesn’t see it that way.