November 8, 2014 |
Members of Transport Workers Union Local 234 on Friday ratified a two-year contract with SEPTA that will provide a 5 percent pay raise over that span. The sides reached a tentative agreement late last week after the union threatened to strike. The union represents 5,000 bus drivers, subway and trolley operators, cashiers, and mechanics. The two-year deal allowed both sides to postpone decisions on pension and health-care issues. The terms are expected to set the pattern for other unions representing SEPTA employees.
November 2, 2014 |
AFTER DEBATING FOR hours, SEPTA and its largest union reached a tentative agreement on a months-long contract dispute. Sources close to the negotiations said the transit authority and Transport Workers Union Local 234 had signed a two-year labor contract late last night, avoiding a strike, though no further details were immediately available. Late last night, several SEPTA executives, including General Manager Joseph Casey and board chairman Pasquale Deon, joined the proceedings, signaling positive progress.
October 29, 2014 |
ALTHOUGH SEPTA's largest union is meeting tomorrow to take a strike vote, a source said riders don't have to worry about the subway shutting down on Monday. But what happens after that is a different story. Transport Workers Union Local 234 - which represents nearly 5,000 bus drivers and subway and trolley operators - is in the midst of heated negotiations with the transit authority over health-care benefits and pensions, according to union officials. TWU's members have been working without a contract since the spring, when the union's previous agreement expired.
October 29, 2014 |
REST ASSURED, commuters: If a contract dispute between SEPTA and its largest union turns sour, the city's train operators and bus and trolley drivers won't strike until next week. And if they do decide to strike, they'll give us all 24 hours' notice, according to Willie Brown, the president of Transport Workers Union Local 234. "My decision to strike is totally up to SEPTA," said Brown, who noted that, even after months of negotiations, the distance between his union and SEPTA on key matters, especially pensions, is as wide as the gap between "California and Pennsylvania.
October 28, 2014 |
No one wants a strike. "I often have no choice in the matter," said Willie Brown, 51, president of Transport Workers Local 234, the union representing SEPTA's bus drivers, subway operators, and trolley drivers. "I don't think it's a matter of if we strike," he said. "It's simply a matter of when, unfortunately. " On Sunday, union members moved a step closer to a strike, voting to allow Brown to call workers off the job - any time, and without warning. Question: You go on strike to gain benefits for workers, but do you worry that the people you are hurting most are the everyday working people who rely on transit to get to their jobs?
October 5, 2014 |
There won't be a SEPTA rail strike on Oct. 13. But there might be one on Feb. 10. And that could coincide with a possible strike by bus, subway, and trolley workers, shutting down the entire SEPTA system. SEPTA officials said Friday that they will ask for a second 120-day presidential emergency board to mediate the Regional Rail labor dispute when the current board's term expires at 12:01 a.m. on Oct. 13, if no settlement is reached by then. Under the federal Railway Labor Act, that would compel locomotive engineers and SEPTA to continue to operate as normal until the end of the 120 days, on Feb. 10. SEPTA's 220 locomotive engineers and 215 railroad electrical workers went on a one-day strike on June 14, before President Obama appointed the first presidential board at Gov. Corbett's request.
September 26, 2014 |
A SEPTA janitorial worker and the transit agency are fighting over the worker's dismissal for refusing to work on holy days, including Rosh Hashanah. Romel McAlpin of Germantown was fired last year by SEPTA for refusing to work on Rosh Hashanah and Oct. 12, his Sabbath. McAlpin, according to legal documents, is an adherent of the Israelite Church of God in Jesus Christ, a sect that observes Jewish holy days and marks the Sabbath from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday. McAlpin, a maintenance custodian in subway tunnels, notified SEPTA of his religious beliefs shortly after he was hired in May 2012, according to a legal brief filed by Transport Workers Union Local 234. SEPTA permitted McAlpin to trade days off with other workers to accommodate his beliefs, but only with workers with less seniority, citing seniority clauses in its union contract.
June 11, 2014 |
SEPTA moved Monday to impose management's terms in a long-running labor dispute with Regional Rail workers, which union leaders said could prompt a strike that would halt all commuter rail service at 12:01 a.m. Saturday. SEPTA's goal apparently is to risk a strike now, when ridership is lower, than next winter, when more commuters and students rely on the system. Regional Rail trains carry about 126,000 riders a day. "We need to get an agreement now," SEPTA general manager Joseph Casey said Monday.
April 10, 2014 |
Transit union negotiators will not resume talks with SEPTA until it provides extensive documentation on health-insurance and pension costs, Transport Workers Union Local 234 president Willie Brown said Tuesday. But Brown said a strike by transit workers "is not in my immediate future. " Union leaders have not called for a strike-authorization vote. "As long as we get some movement, we're going to negotiate," he said. In a phone conversation with reporters Tuesday, Brown blasted SEPTA for paying much higher pensions to managers than to union workers, calling it a "clash of the classes.
March 14, 2014 |
SEPTA's biggest labor contract expires Friday night, but an immediate strike by Philadelphia bus drivers, subway and trolley operators, and maintenance workers seems unlikely. Negotiations between SEPTA and union representatives continued Wednesday at the Sheraton Philadelphia Downtown Hotel. The contract with Transport Workers Union Local 234 covers about 4,700 SEPTA employees in the city, roughly half of all the transit agency's workers. Separate contracts expire next month with TWU 234, Suburban Transit Division, Victory District, which represents about 160 suburban maintenance and clerical employees; and TWU 234, Suburban Transit Division, Frontier District, which represents about 230 bus drivers and mechanics in Montgomery and Bucks Counties.