Ontario bus drivers served formal strike notice to the First Student school bus company.
The drivers, serving the Bluewater District School Board and the Bruce Power plant, will go on strike on May 21 if no deal is reached before then. The notice came after months of negotiations.
The Unifor Local 4268-represented employees drive buses serving schools in the Port Elgin and Kincardine areas as well as shuttle buses serving the shift changes at the Bruce Power nuclear generating plant. More than 65 drivers will be affected by the strike.
Core issues in negotiations include scheduling and outstanding monetary issues. The parties’ collective agreements expired in August 2014.
According to the union, provincial government policy has made bargaining more difficult because of the pressure on operators to maintain low compensation levels in order to win new routes. Unifor is calling on the Ontario government to reform the current Request for Proposal (RFP) process for handing out school bus contracts.
Talks continue between Unifor and First Student for drivers in Owen Sound-Wiarton, Browmanville, Thornhill and Owen Sound.
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