You know, I was thinking earlier tonight (Monday night — sorry, it’s 4am and I haven’t been to bed yet) that they might actually vote Yes to accept the offer on the table on Thursday. But after reading some recent news articles, I’m no longer so sure that enough will. Many appear to be ready for this to go on for a long time. The city appears prepared to let that happen. So if the strikers vote no, the stand off is likely to continue until someone blinks. Who that will be, I don’t know but the only losers are the members of the public.
Granted, most of the union members interviewed for the articles are either senior employees or not-quite-so-new-but-not-yet-senior employees who see themselves creeping closer and closer to the vaunted “senior” status. They’re the ones most concerned about not being in control of scheduling.
Ottawa Citizen: Transpo union members fill meeting to overflowing
The large hall at St. Elias Cathedral near Mooney’s Bay was filled to overflowing as about 2,000 people turned out to hear a plea from their union leaders to vote against the city’s latest offer. A flyer circulated by the union said: “Your bargaining committee unanimously urges you to vote No in this forced vote.”
Ottawa Citizen: Transit union leaders confident members will vote No (This is a particularly interesting article in that it gives a glimpse into the meeting. I’m afraid it doesn’t make me any more sympathetic to the cause.)
“If 51 per cent of us — 50 per cent plus one — vote Yes to this contract, (the union) is finished. It’s finished. That’s why it’s important to vote No… They think they’re going to get 50 plus one, because if they do, we’re finished. … So please, please, brothers and sisters, please vote No and let’s show them that the mayor, Alain Mercier (the head of OC Transpo) … and the public will not decide what working conditions we’re going to have in the workplace.”
Ottawa Citizen: City says it won’t ‘cave’ to transit union’s demands
Emboldened by what they say is strong public support for their position, city councillors say they will not “cave” if striking transit workers vote down a contract offer later this week.
That reality, though, has some worried that the strike could last much, much longer if the union spurns the offer on Thursday.