Metro Vancouver SkyTrain workers issue 72-hour strike notice

CUPE 7000, the union representing 900 SkyTrain workers, has issued a 72-hour strike notice to the B.C. Rapid Transit Company.

The announcement comes after four full days of mediation and over 40 days of direct bargaining in which the union reports no significant progress was made on the key issues.

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“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,” said CUPE 7000 president Tony Rebelo.

“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.”

The parties are still in bargaining, but the union says it will provide an update on its job action plan at 11 a.m. on Saturday.

“Since May 6, British Columbia Rapid Transit Company has been working hard to renew its agreement with the union representing about 900 employees including station attendants and maintenance workers. CUPE 7000 has now ended mediation and has given BCRTC 72 hours’ notice that it will be taking job action. The union has not informed BCRTC what form the job action would take nor when it might occur,” said Michel Ladrak, president of B.C. Rapid Transit Company.

“While we are disappointed by this development, BCRTC and CUPE will continue 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.”

On Nov. 21, CUPE 7000 members voted 96.8 per cent in favour of striking; the last contract expired on Aug. 31.

CUPE 7000 represents approximately 900 SkyTrain workers who provide service as SkyTrain attendants and control operators as well as administration, maintenance and technical staff on the Expo and Millennium lines.

Canada Line and West Coast Express are not affected by this announcement.

Read the original article here.

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