Metro Vancouver transit workers go to the polls today to take a strike vote.
Unifor Local 111 President Nathan Woods says 4700 bus drivers, SeaBus workers and other maintenance and support workers are voting today from 8am to 10pm at the Italian Cultural Centre.
He says if the membership gives them a strike mandate there are no plans to strand thousands of transit riders.
“Well the next step is to work back to the table and sit down with Coast Mountain Bus Company and identify that we have a strong mandate from their employees, our members, to negotiate a fair collective agreement. There is no plan to take the system down and create havoc in the city.”
Even with the strike vote happening, they won’t be hitting the bricks anytime soon.
A union memo to drivers leaked to CKNW says in spite of the strike vote, negotiations between the two sides will continue May 9th and 24th, and no further action is planned during this period.
The memo goes on to say, “there are many issues up for discussions and while some issues are signed off, others remain.”
Some of the contentious ones: Sunday premiums, and contracting out of maintenance work.
Drivers clearly don’t want to strike because strike pay is only $250 a week.
The Coast Mountain Bus Company has said it’s “working hard” to negotiate a collective agreement and won’t be commenting further.