CUPE 7000, the union representing 900 SkyTrain workers, has announced that it will proceed with a full “withdrawal of services” starting Tuesday, Dec. 10.
The system shutdown of the Expo and Millennium lines will begin on Tuesday at 5 a.m., and normal service will resume on Friday at 5 a.m.
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.
“We understand that this is a massive action that will cause a great deal of inconvenience to our passengers, which is why we hope we can still reach an agreement before Tuesday morning,” said CUPE 7000 president Tony Rebelo.
“We have been either at the table or in mediation for almost 50 days now, so it’s time to get a deal done.”
The last SkyTrain strike was a single day shutdown more than twenty years ago.
CUPE 7000 represents approximately 900 SkyTrain workers who provide service as SkyTrain attendants and control operators as well as administration, maintenance and technical staff for the Expo and Millennium lines.
Canada Line and West Coast Express are not affected by this announcement.
Michel Ladrak, president of B.C. Rapid Transit Company, issued a statement following the union’s announcement:
“British Columbia Rapid Transit Company is extremely disappointed the union representing about 900 of its employees has decided to take the drastic step of a full strike beginning Tuesday morning. It is completely unacceptable the union has chosen to use the 150,000 people who use the Expo and Millennium Lines each weekday as leverage,” he said.
“Canada Line, West Coast Express, bus, SeaBus and HandyDART services will operate as normal. BCRTC is working with TransLink and Coast Mountain Bus Company to secure additional bus service on existing routes, but customers should consider alternate arrangements should a full strike proceed.
“BCRTC remains committed to getting a deal done. We will continue bargaining until the last moment to avoid this unnecessary and disruptive job action.”
This article has been updated since it was originally posted.
Read the original article here.