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Archive for January 9th, 2009

25% of the ATU 279 voted to accept the offer

January 09, 2009 @ 00:36 By: gordon Category: Current affairs, Transit strike

According to the Amalgamated Transit Union’s transit strike website, 2045 members vote of which 75% voted not to accept the City’s offer. This means that 25% of the union members voted to accept the offer.

To the 25% I say a very sincere “Thank you”. You obviously are able to think for yourself rather than follow Andre Cornellier like sheep.

Also on their website is a YouTube video of their “victory party” entitled “2000 souls”. Frankly, I find the video disgusting and I can’t help but wonder what the 25% think of it.


They’ve also got this high contrast red and black graphic which lists the number of voters, the proportion that voted “no” and includes the phrase “No  means No” underneath a ballot box with a X in it. I find this very ironic because I came up with my own high contrast red and black graphic about two weeks ago which I’ve been resisting the urge to use in a blog entry. Until now, that is. 😉

I’m think of having pins made up with my graphic on it and selling them for a buck or two. Would you buy one?

So, back to the main issue: They have voted to not accept the offer. Presumably they’re going to continue to protest, though the smartest thing they could do is return to work as a gesture of good faith while the negotiators continue to try to hammer down a contract. However, based on their victory video and what I’ve seen of Andre Cornellier in interviews on television, the only gesture Cornellier knows involves the middle finger of his hand.

Hopefully, the City negotiators will not capitulate to the union as a result of this vote. In essence, nothing has really changed other than Cornellier gets to say “I told you so” and act smug.

Also, the Canadian Industrial Relations Board is soliciting input from members of the public with how they’ve been affected by the strike. The deadline for submissions is 5:00pm Friday, January 9th, so if you’re planning on sending something in you better do it immediately.

Here’s an excerpt from the CIRB website:

Section 87.4(1) of the Canada Labour Code provides that: "During a strike or lockout not prohibited by this Part, the employer, the trade union and the employees in the bargaining unit must continue the supply of services, operation of facilities or production of goods to the extent necessary to prevent an immediate and serious danger to the safety or health of the public."

Keeping this criterion in mind, members of the public have an opportunity to provide a written explanation as to why they think this obligation is or is not being met during the current work stoppage involving the City of Ottawa (OC Transpo) and the Amalgamated Transit Union, Local 279.

Submissions must provide specific details in support of the statements being made and must be limited to the issue raised in this notice. They must also include the name and contact information of the person making the submission. Please note that all submissions received will be transmitted to the employer and the trade union for their review and comment.

Submissions may be sent to the Canada Industrial Relations Board as follows:

  • by email at octranspo-atu@cirb-ccri.gc.ca
  • by fax at 613-941-4461
  • by regular mail or by hand at the following address:

Canada Industrial Relations Board, Regional Director
C.D. Howe Building, 4th Floor West, 240 Sparks Street
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0X8

If the CIRB determine that the strike is having too much of an impact or causing extreme hardships for certain groups, they might force the union to return to work while the negotiations continue.