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Friday, October 10, 2014

Golden Gate Transit Bus Mechanics Call for a Strike Next Friday

Posted By on Fri, Oct 10, 2014 at 7:13 AM

click to enlarge FLICKR/C.M. KEINER
Mechanics have decided to send a message to the Golden Gate Transit District by announcing a one-day strike scheduled for next Friday, which could be the latest in a series of actions over contract disputes that have resulted in service cutbacks for commuters.

If the union continues with the strike, which is the third by the Golden Gate Bridge Labor Coalition since workers' labor contracts expired July 1, bus service between San Francisco and Marin County will be cancelled and commuters impacted for the second time. That's bad news for the 22,000 people who rely on the bus service everyday. 

"We firmly believe that if you work hard at a full time job in the bay area, you deserve to be able to go home at night and not worry that your family might be put into bankruptcy through health-care bills," said Tim Jenkins of Teamsters Local 856 at a press conference Thursday.

The planned strike by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters Locals 856 and 665 follows a Sept. 26 action by the Golden Gate Ferry captains that stopped service on a busy game day in San Francisco.

"The district is giving every employee who takes this plan $12,000 on a debit card that they can use for health care expenses," Golden Gate Transit spokesperson Priya Clemens told reporters. "The district is absorbing that cost of that high deductible but it does allow us to tap into a larger pool and to provide our employees with great health care benefits at a lower cost."

"We need to be a good steward of the tolls and fares that are given to us," Clemens said. "We need to balance the concerns of our rate payers with the concerns of our employees."
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