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Canada Transit strike: Talks go late into the night as SkyTrain shutdown looms

10:26  10 december  2019
10:26  10 december  2019 Source:   vancouversun.com

Negotiations continue as one-day strike looms that would cancel classes for as many as 116,000 Ottawa students

  Negotiations continue as one-day strike looms that would cancel classes for as many as 116,000 Ottawa students Negotiations continue as one-day strike looms that would cancel classes for as many as 116,000 Ottawa students A strike could cancel classes for as many as 116,000 elementary and secondary students in Ottawa at three school boards.

A possible SkyTrain shutdown is less than 24 hours away and commuters are bracing for worst. Jennifer Palma is covering that story.

Both sides in the SkyTrain labour dispute continue to meet to try and reach a deal before Tuesday morning, when workers are threatening a 3-day full system shutdown . NOW PLAYING: other. Talks continue as full SkyTrain strike looms .

SkyTrain workers are set to walk off the job Tuesday unless the union representing workers and the employer come to an agreement Monday.

As of 11:30 p.m. Monday, negotiations between both parties continued behind closed doors.

TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond said he is hopeful a deal could be reached, but urged SkyTrain users to make alternative arrangements.

a group of people waiting to board a train: Here's what you should know about the continuing negotiations and the planned withdrawal of SkyTrain services beginning Tuesday.© Jason Payne Here's what you should know about the continuing negotiations and the planned withdrawal of SkyTrain services beginning Tuesday.

Without a deal, the Expo and Millennium lines will be shut down starting 5 a.m. Tuesday until 5 a.m. Friday.

“The negotiations may last well into the night, much like they did with the bus bargaining a week and a half ago,” said Desmond at a news conference at TransLink headquarters Monday afternoon.

A shutdown will be “extremely disruptive,” and TransLink has limited options to offer riders.

“To be very clear, there is no way to replace a system that reliably moves 150,000 people per day each weekday, he said. “Many people will be left with no other options to get around the region.”

OSSTF offers province a way to prevent 1-day strike

  OSSTF offers province a way to prevent 1-day strike Ontario's education minister fired back at a list of demands from the Ontario high school teachers union, calling for an end to 'the games that singularly hurt our kids.'In a statement released late Friday night, the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF) proposed that the government revert to class sizes of 22 students, eliminate e-learning courses and ensure Bill 124 will not impede free collective bargaining.

SkyTrain is the oldest and longest, fully-automated, driverless, rapid- transit system in the world. There are three integrated lines With the addition of the new Evergreen Extension, the Millennium travels from Vancouver through Burnaby into Port Moody and Coquitlam.

Both sides in the SkyTrain labour dispute continue to meet to try and reach a deal before Tuesday morning, when workers are threatening a 3-day full system shutdown . NOW PLAYING: Viral. Talks continue as full SkyTrain strike looms .

Due to labour considerations and operational constraints, Coast Mountain Bus Company is unable to beef up its bus service or implement bus bridges, he said.

TransLink is also unable to add more trains to the West Coast Express, a commuter rail line which shuttles passengers between Mission and Vancouver.

Based on models, TransLink estimates about 15,000 more vehicles will be on the road Tuesday morning should the SkyTrain be grounded. The added congestion will put more pressure on operating services, including buses, the Canada Line and West Coast Express.

Desmond declined to provide details on whether both sides are close or far apart in the bargaining session.

“They’re going to stay at the table as long as they can to get a deal,” he said. “Clearly, we’re not there yet.”

Watch here for the latest on SkyTrain service and the negotiations.

Here’s what’s happening:

• CUPE 7000, which represents 900 SkyTrain workers, and B.C. Rapid Transit Company, which employs the workers, have spent more than 40 days bargaining for a new collective agreement. Their most recent agreement expired on Aug. 31.

'Time to get a deal done:' Full SkyTrain shutdown planned for Tuesday morning

  'Time to get a deal done:' Full SkyTrain shutdown planned for Tuesday morning SkyTrain employees are planning a full withdrawal of services for three days, beginning Tuesday, if no progress is made in talks with TransLink’s B.C. Rapid Transit Company. “We understand 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,” CUPE 7000 president Tony Rebelo said in a statement Saturday. “We have been either at the “We understand 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,” CUPE 7000 president Tony Rebelo said in a statement Saturday.

Meanwhile, talks between the union representing SkyTrain workers and B.C. Rapid Transit Company have also bogged down . CUPE Local 7000 has declared an impasse, BCRTC president Michel Ladrak announced on Wednesday (November 13). “They have advised that they will be holding a meeting

2:18 Talks begin aimed at ending transit strike . WATCH: Talks began Tuesday afternoon aimed at averting a full-scale shutdown of bus and SeaBus Both sides in the Metro Vancouver transit strike resumed talks on Tuesday in the hopes of avoiding a system-wide bus strike . In a Twitter update, the

• The two sides also went through four days of mediation last week but no progress was made.

• CUPE 7000 issued 72-hour strike notice on Friday, which means its members are prepared to walk off the job following the end of the notice period.

• A three-day full withdrawal of SkyTrain services is scheduled to begin Tuesday at 5 a.m. unless a deal is reached. Service would resume on Friday at 5 a.m.

• Negotiations are currently underway. There is no set deadline for an end to the talks.

What you should know:

• Only the Expo and Millennium Lines are affected. The Canada Line is not affected by the job action as those workers are represented by a different union. Also operating as normal are: West Coast Express, Coast Mountain buses, West Vancouver Blue Bus, HandyDART and SeaBus.

• TransLink will not have additional buses on its regular routes and cannot put buses on SkyTrain routes or have bus bridges between SkyTrain stations as it would violate labour laws.

• SkyTrain workers opted for a full withdrawal of services because an overtime ban would reduce staffing levels significantly and would not allow for the system to be operated safely.

Metro Vancouver commuters gear up for potential SkyTrain shutdown

  Metro Vancouver commuters gear up for potential SkyTrain shutdown Metro Vancouver commuters are bracing for what could be a chaotic week, with a potential system-wide SkyTrain shutdown set to start Tuesday if a deal between workers and management fails to materialize. Despite talks over the weekend, the union representing 900 SkyTrain workers and the employer, the B.C. Rapid Transit Company, couldn’t come to an agreement by Sunday, causing uncertainty at the start of the work week for an estimated 150,000 people who use the Expo and Millennium lines daily.

While transit operators were able to reach a deal with Coast Mountain Bus Company, SkyTrain workers have not been as lucky. As a result, a SkyTrain strike is scheduled to begin 5 a.m. on Tuesday unless the company and the union representing workers comes to an agreement on Monday.

Talks to end a national bus driver strike that has left hundreds of thousands of commuters stranded, are expected to continue into Friday evening. Striking workers are demanding a 12% pay hike, bosses are offering 7%. READ: Nationwide bus strike will carry on into Thursday as negotiations continue.

• A uniform ban also would not work because passengers wouldn’t recognize staff if they were to step in during emergencies on platforms and trains.

• Unifor, which represents transit operators, was able to reach a deal with Coast Mountain Bus Company in the final minutes before deadline, so things can often change very quickly in negotiations.

• Headed to the Vancouver Canucks vs. Toronto Maple Leafs game at Rogers Arena on Tuesday evening? Give yourself extra time to get there if the strike goes ahead as planned, as Stadium-Chinatown SkyTrain station would not be in operation during the strike.

• TransLink urged customers to make other arrangements, including using a park-and-ride service to connect to buses; travelling outside rush hour; working from home; using a carpooling service; walking or cycling to work; or using a free bike valet service at Vancouver Public Library from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

What people are saying:

Premier John Horgan said he was encouraged that talks were continuing in the SkyTrain labour dispute.

“I’m hoping they’ll find a resolution before the day is out,” he said.

Tentative deal reached in Vancouver transit talks, strike averted

  Tentative deal reached in Vancouver transit talks, strike averted VANCOUVER — A tentative agreement has been reached to avert a strike by workers that had threatened to snarl the commute for Metro Vancouver residents who use the Expo or Millennium SkyTrain lines. Translink spokesman Ben Murphy said the trains would be delayed by at least an hour Tuesday morning as the system is powered back up, but they would be running. "The system was powered down last night in anticipation of a three-day shutdown," he said.Translink spokesman Ben Murphy said the trains would be delayed by at least an hour Tuesday morning as the system is powered back up, but they would be running.

Last-minute contract talks have been scheduled for Tuesday with a transit strike facing commuters in Metro Vancouver later this week. Gavin McGarrigle, Unifor’s lead negotiator, said Monday the union is prepared to negotiate until midnight Wednesday and if no agreement is reached, a three-day strike

NJ Transit railroad workers rally with strike looming . "At some point, it seems to me that the state has to put its shoulder here into the effort and be serious about coming to a contract negotiation and averting a New Jersey Transit is bracing for a possible rail strike that may start Sunday at midnight.

Asked if the province would intervene, he said, “Any agreement is best found at the bargaining table.”

Michael McDaniel , president of Coast Mountain Bus Company, released a statement Monday:

“CMBC customers should be aware that given our operational constraints and labour considerations, we are not able to increase bus service in response to the planned strike by BCRTC employees on SkyTrain this week. Bus service will be operating as it would on any regular weekday.”

“The planned job action will affect Expo and Millennium Lines only. Customers should plan for higher passenger volumes than usual.”

A shutdown of the Expo and Millennium lines would affect the estimated 150,000 riders who take SkyTrain daily in Vancouver, Surrey, Burnaby, New Westminster, Coquitlam and Port Moody.

Charles Gauthier , CEO of the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association, said any shutdown would be disruptive to downtown-area businesses, especially as the holiday season approaches.

“There’ll definitely be an impact on retail, and people with discretionary income may make the choice not to drive downtown if they typically get here using SkyTrain,” said Gauthier. “It’s a concern anytime, but especially at this time of year when it’s peak shopping season and retailers make or break it for the year.”

Anita Huberman , CEO of the Surrey Board of Trade, called for an end to the job action, which she says is detrimental to Surrey’s economy:

“Without adequate transportation modes getting our workforce to their jobs, economic productivity is diminished,” she said, adding Surrey has seen a large increase in transit ridership as its population continues to grow.

Ontario high school teachers hold another one-day strike, but new talks planned

  Ontario high school teachers hold another one-day strike, but new talks planned TORONTO — Public high school teachers at nine Ontario school boards held a one-day strike Wednesday — the second in as many weeks — as the province and union agreed to return to the bargaining table. The teachers have been without a contract since their last one expired at the end of August, and their union has blamed the Progressive Conservative government for the lack of progress in their negotiations. The two parties haven't held talks sinceThe teachers have been without a contract since their last one expired at the end of August, and their union has blamed the Progressive Conservative government for the lack of progress in their negotiations.

SkyTrain . SkyTrain is the oldest and one of the longest automated driverless light rapid transit systems in the world. The Expo and Millennium SkyTrain Lines connect downtown Vancouver with the cities of Burnaby, New Westminster and Surrey.

READ MORE: Transit Strike Day 21: Both sides dig in as system-wide shutdown looms . Job action enters day 21 with transit service shutdown looming . “The cost of living is actually higher here, the affordability crisis One SFU student is taking matters into his own hands, organizing a walk from

Jordan Cripps , development and communications officer of the Disability Foundation, said any SkyTrain shutdown would hit persons of disability hard. Cripps, who has spina bifida and uses a wheelchair, relies on SkyTrain to get from New Westminster to Gastown in Vancouver.

“That won’t be an option tomorrow should there be a strike,” he said. While he has other options, such as driving or taking a convoluted bus route with multiple transfers, he said other people with disabilities may not have any alternative means to get around.

Read our latest coverage on the SkyTrain negotiations:

SkyTrain workers take strike vote, bus drivers look to escalate job action

SkyTrain workers return to bargaining table with strike mandate

SkyTrain workers issue 72-hour strike notice

‘Time to get a deal done:’ Full SkyTrain shutdown planned for Tuesday morning

Metro Vancouver commuters gear up for potential SkyTrain shutdown

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Talks break off between province and OSSTF, union says 1-day strike will go ahead .
The union that represents public high school teachers in Ontario says a one-day strike in 10 boards will proceed on Wednesday now that contract talks between the union and province have broken off. Talks broke off on Monday, after just one day of negotiating, the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation (OSSTF) has confirmed.The union and province were scheduled to talk on Tuesday as well, but the mediator says both sides are too far apart to resume negotiations.According to the union, the issues are class sizes, mandatory online courses and funding cuts. The Ontario education ministry said the main issue is compensation.

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