Central Okanagan bus drivers set to strike this Thursday | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Central Okanagan bus drivers set to strike this Thursday

Bus drivers in Kelowna, Peachland, Lake Country and Merritt will go on strike Nov. 10, 2016.
Image Credit: FILE PHOTO
November 08, 2016 - 11:13 PM

CENTRAL OKANAGAN – The union representing bus drivers across most of the Central Okanagan is planning to strike Thursday, Nov. 10.

Members of the Amalgamated Transit Union local 1722 made the decision in Kelowna Tuesday night, weeks after talks broke down with their employer, First Canada.

The bus drivers have been without a contract for more than half a year and are fighting for, among other things, equal pay regardless of bus size, a pay raise commensurate with drivers in the Lower Mainland and a cost of living raise.

President Scott Lovell says First Canada has not responded to their threat of strike after they rejected the Scottish company’s final offer earlier this month. A 72-hour strike notice was issued on Nov. 3 and Lovell says the grace period is over.

“The company (First Canada) has not taken our concerns seriously as was demonstrated by the substance of their latest offer,” he says. “We have concluded that the continued course of action by the company and repeated refusal to recognize or address our core concerns was to force some form of job action.”

A media release from ATU 1722 says as of Thursday Nov. 10, “all transit services will be suspended.”

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