BURNABY (NEWS 1130) – Just one day after the union representing bus and SeaBus workers ratified a deal averting a system-wide strike, commuters in the Lower Mainland are facing the possibility of job action by SkyTrain workers.
The union representing approximately 900 SkyTrain workers has issued a 72-hour strike notice. CUPE 7000 hasn’t disclosed what action could look like, but details are expected to be released Saturday morning at 11 a.m. In the event of a strike, service on the West Coast Express and Canada Line would not be impacted as workers are represented by a different union.
The notice follows four days of mediated talks between CUPE 7000 and employer BC Rapid Transit Company, with no progress.
#MetroVancouver SkyTrain workers have issued 72-hour strike notice. @cupe7000 still in mediated talks with BC Rapid Transit Company. @safetyguybc says bargaining to continue over weekend. Key issues for 900 workers include wages, forced overtime and staffing levels. @NEWS1130
— Marcella Bernardo (@Bernardo1130) December 6, 2019
Union president Tony Rebelo says they are still hoping to reach a deal without disrupting services for transit users.
“We are still committed to reaching an agreement at the table, and our committee will make itself available day and night, over the weekend, to reach a fair deal without any interruption of service,” Rebelo says in a news release.
“We will need to work very hard to reach a deal that addresses our concerns about wages, forced overtime, staffing levels and trades adjustment language, among other issues.”
Bargaining between CUPE 7000 and the employer is expected to continue over the weekend.
President of BCRTC Michel Ladrak says he’s disappointed a strike notice has been issued, saying they’re not clear on what job action workers could take.
“While we are disappointed by this development, BCRTC and CUPE will continuing bargaining through the weekend. We are hopeful and committed to reaching a fair deal without disrupting the valuable service we provide to the residents of this region.”
TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond is NOT clipping on the SkyTrain worker 72 hour strike notice. Directed us to release instead. @NEWS1130
— Tarnjit Parmar (@Tarnjitkparmar) December 6, 2019
– With files from Marcella Bernardo