Arbitration Victory for CAW on BC Transit Dispute

April 20, 2011, 3:45 PM EST

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An arbitrator is supporting the CAW's case that BC Transit had agreed in recent bargaining not to introduce new larger community shuttle buses until the next round of contract talks.

The arbitrator said that a discussion in a hallway during bargaining in March 2010 between the two sides was substantive and the union could rely on what was verbally agreed.   

During collective bargaining for 600 members of CAW Local 333 in Victoria, British Columbia the employer said they would not introduce new larger community shuttle buses.

"The issues around this new bus are complex," said Bob Jones CAW Local 333 president. "We took the employer's word they would not introduce these buses till the next round of bargaining in 2012."

The BC government imposed a zero wage increase for all public sector workers in the province in 2010. "We believe the drivers with this new model bus should benefit from extensive changes to the agreement, including substantial wage increases," Jones said.

"Arbitrator Jim Dorsey agreed that this vehicle cannot be introduced until the next round of bargaining," said Susan Spratt BC area director. "The decision gives us the time to prepare for bargaining an agreement which will reflect the realities of a new technology in transit," she said.

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