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Union demands TTC stop using contract workers after serious workplace accident

The TTC's union is out with safety demands after serious attacks on a bus operator this month. Don Mitchell / AM640

The union representing transit workers is calling on the TTC to stop the practice of hiring contract workers for vehicle maintenance work due to safety concerns.

The Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 113, which represents around 11,000 TTC workers, pointed to an Aug. 15 incident at the Wilson Bus Garage in which a contract service line worker got behind the wheel of an out of service bus and hit a driver not working at the time.

Kevin Morton, secretary-treasurer of Local 113, told AM640’s The John Oakley Show that the third party worker was hired to fuel and clean buses and that GPS and video footage showed that the bus was traveling above the facility’s speed limit of 7 km/h.

 

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“She traveled between 9 and 12 km/h when she contacted him,” Morton said.”It cut him in the forehead, blackened his eye, and he was out unconscious for eight full seconds.”

Morton goes on to say that this was the third incident at the Wilson Garage involving a contract worker in recent times.

“In 2014, a contract worker supervisor for some reason decided she would get into a vehicle and drove a bus damaging it significantly along with another bus.”

After an investigation into that incident, it was revealed that the supervisor did not have a valid license to drive the vehicle.

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In a statement, Staff of the ATU Local 113 accused the TTC of not doing their due diligence in properly training contract workers, and as such, union workers safety has been jeopardized.

“What I’m suggesting is trained and qualified versus untrained, unqualified and poorly paid,” Morton said. “If these people were qualified, they would get a union job at the TTC.”

Stuart Green, senior communications officer for the TTC, confirmed the Aug. 15 accident at the Wilson garage, saying it was “an unfortunate incident.”

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“Safety is the cornerstone of all TTC employees, and we take incidents like this seriously,” Green said. “Service Line Cleaners are required to possess a valid Class A, B, or C Ontario license, and the contract requires they are fit for duty at all times.”

The TTC says the investigation is on-going and continues to review the incident with the Ministry of Labour and the contractor.

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Click to play video: 'Dog seized from owner caught on video allegedly abusing it while riding TTC' Dog seized from owner caught on video allegedly abusing it while riding TTC
Dog seized from owner caught on video allegedly abusing it while riding TTC – Aug 8, 2017

 

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