November 30, 2023

It will be business as usual come Monday as Peterborough Transit workers ratified a new three-year deal with the city on Saturday, averting potential job action.

After inking a tentative agreement on Friday, the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 1320, which represents transit workers, on Saturday voted 86.5 per cent in favour of ratifying the new deal.

Had the agreement not been approved, transit workers were ready to walk off the job on Monday after giving a 72-hour strike notice on Friday. Contract negotiations had been underway since May but talks broke down in mid-September. Transit members then voted 99 per cent in favour of a strike mandate.

“The membership stuck together and was clear about what they were willing to accept and ultimately accepted this latest offer for a three-year deal,” said Local 1320 president/business agent Cory Macleod.

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The union represents 103 full-time staff and 20-part time employees. Among key issues during contract talks were wages and hours of work, the union had previously stated.

ATU International president John Costa stated the members were willing to “go to the mat to fight” for a contract with “living wages and strong benefits” to help them provide for their families.

“I applaud their strength, solidarity and unity to secure a contract that recognizes their commitment and dedication as frontline heroes to provide safe and reliable transportation that the people of Peterborough rely on each day,” he said.

In a statement, the City of Peterborough’s chief administrative officer Jasbir Raina on Saturday said the ratification vote is “fantastic news” for residents.

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“Given this fantastic news, Peterborough Transit, which is one of the most value-creating services for residents, will continue to operate normally as expected on Monday,” Raina said.

“My sincere appreciation and congratulations to the ATU Local 1320 executive committee and members, as well as the city’s bargaining team, for their hard work, commitment and true sense of belonging for our community to make it possible. Our front-line service delivery workers are the true value-creating leaders and brand ambassadors for the city.”

City council will hold a ratification vote as soon as possible, Raina noted.

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