At a meeting on June 16, bus drivers with the Réseau de transport de Longueuil (RTL) in Quebec, ratified their new collective agreement.
Workers voted 79 per cent in favour of the tentative agreement that the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) and the employer reached on June 5.
“This new collective agreement is a major victory not only for RTL drivers but also for all members of the public in Longueuil,” said Sylvie Champagne, Syndicat des chauffeurs d’autobus du RTL, CUPE 3333 president.
The five-year agreement covers the period from Jan. 1, 2017, to Dec. 31, 2021 and calls for a total wage increase of 11 per cent spread over the life of the agreement, said the union.
The highlights of the new agreement include a series of measures to simultaneously improve trip times, customer service and the working environment of about 750 drivers. These measures flow from the drivers’ number one priority during these negotiations, which is summarized by their slogan: Le service aux usagers, notre priorité (Service to users is our priority), said CUPE.
$1 million was invested over five years to improve trip times. The union and the employer commit to agreeing jointly to changes to trips due to major worksites – the Champlain Bridge, the Louis-Hippolyte-La Fontaine tunnel-bridge, the Réseau express métropolitain (REM) and the Longueuil metro station terminal. The scheduling and assignment committee will have a special mandate to improve its production process, said the union.
About a year ago, RTL bus drivers voted 98 per cent in favour of a strike mandate, according to CUPE.
© Copyright Canadian HR Reporter, Thomson Reuters Canada Limited. All rights reserved.