City wrong in Transpo dispute
Monday, August 20, 2012
Times & Trasncript
By: Don LeBlanc
Topics: Codiac Transit, Labour Relations
To The Editor : I have yet to come across a politician or union official that I have any trust in. However, in the case of the transit issue, one untrustworthy group stands out above the rest. They are in City Hall. The transit union negotiation team was presented an offer. They had the membership vote on it.
The offer was accepted. City Council did not approve the offer that was made and the offer was retracted.
Either there was someone with no authority making an offer to the union on behalf of the City or there was some sort of political spin being put on it. I'm a fir m believer that a man is only as good as his word. In this case, the word from City Hall is no good.
Yes, in the aftermath, the union did vote to go on strike. They did promise to give all involved a 10-day notice to any strike. City Hall, on the other hand, locked the union out with absolutely no notice, leaving some passengers standing at the bus stops.
The mayor has never made any attempt to hide his disdain of the transit system. He proved it himself in this very paper with his comment, 'As I sit in my office I see empty buses going past in the middle of the day.' Really, Mr. Mayor? Do you think it's possible that in the middle of the day a lot of those would-be passengers might be at work? Using your logic, we should close all the parks and playgrounds because they look empty when school is in.
I've been a passenger of our transit system for the past 35 years and I can assure you that these drivers do a lot more than just steer those big white things around town. They actually saved lives, in the case of a senior wandering off. I've seen them make new citizens feel more welcome to our city with useful information. They report accidents, obstructions, hazardous conditions, and malfunctioning traffic lights. In 35 years I've only complained about two drivers.
You've pumped up your chest, flexed your muscle, and shown them who's boss.
Now it's time to cut the BS, go to binding arbitration, and stop messing with the good people who voted you in. You could prove me wrong and show up with your original offer as a starting point.
Don LeBlanc, Moncton