Strike shuts down Toronto's transit system

Saturday, April 26, 2008

A Toronto streetcar

Public transit service in Toronto was suddenly shut down for Saturday when Toronto Transit Commission workers rejected a draft labour contract on Friday.

The transit operator's major union, Amalgamated Transit Union Local 113, reneged on an earlier promise to give 48 hours notice before taking strike action. This about-face prompted Toronto Mayor David Miller to condemn the union's actions as "unacceptable" and "irresponsible".

Meanwhile, the Ontario provincial government is preparing a back-to-work law this weekend. If this is passed on Sunday, Toronto's transit service would likely resume for the Monday morning rush hour.

Toronto transit advocate Steve Munro reacted to the strike situation noting communication problems from the Local 113 union. He further commented that "Local 113 has blown its relationship with the most pro-labour Commission and Council they could hope to have across the bargaining table. From here on, who can trust their signature on a contract?"