Monday, December 22, 2008

Ottawa Transit Strike: Day 13

A lot of talks over the weekend, but no solutions came about. The nearer we get to Christmas, the less likely it is that there will be any solution until the new year. Which is sad for everyone involved, except possibly the city that is saving $3M a week while the strike is on.

One catch-all article posted on has the following headlines within itself:
  • Some local businesses are suggesting that the OC Transpo strike, combined with the unfriendly weather, has brought a 20-30 per cent reduction in consumer traffic;
  • To help people get to the mall, Bayshore Shopping Centre is offering a $5 taxi chit to shoppers who visit customer service with their receipts;
  • Some job hunters are being forced to turn down jobs because, without buses, they haven't got a way to get to their possible new jobs;
  • Some folks are losing jobs they had because they can't get in to work anymore;
  • Para Transpo has increased operations 10 per cent since OC Transpo service stopped;
  • And, finally, even if an agreement is reached, it would likely take a few days to a week for full service to be restored.
On, Amalgamated Transit Union Local 279 President Andre Cornellier isn't very optimistic about the current negotiations, and he's not hiding that fact. But some picketers, according to the same article, have been noticing a swing in the battle for public opinion in favour of the ATU since their official website was launched about a week ago:

"Well, we're talking right now…When people are talking, things can happen," said Andre Cornellier, president of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 279 Monday, while taking a break from negotiations with the City of Ottawa.

"But you know what, I'm not very optimistic right now . I wouldn't want to give anybody a false sense of hope or not."


Norm Deschamps, who has been driving an OC Transpo bus for 20 years, said he gets the impression that people's opinions have been turning in the bus drivers' favour since the recent launch of the union's website, which was last updated on Friday.

"We're finally getting some information out that has given [our] whole perspective of this strike to the public," Deschamps said.
And the Ottawa Citizen had a riveting report of no news in the negotiations.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is ironic. Only in a socialist country would the people pay for someone to strike.

Some people call this democracy, but when Unions prevent individuals from doing the job they don't wish to do, that becomes hypocrisy, not a democracy.

I'd vote to either implementing a measure similar to New York City Taylor Law, or freely allow enterprise to operate our bus routes.