July 5, 2015

Big pride in bus, transit victories

Morr, Bonnie.2011

By Bonnie MorrVice President, Bus Department The UTU has gained a new First Transit property in Farmington, N.M., which is now in Local 1687 out of Albuquerque. Contract negotiations have begun. We also are in the initial stages of organizing some 200 workers on a transit property and a light rail property in Southern California. [...]

MLK advocated economic opportunity, trade unions

Dr. King

By Calvin StudivantAlternate Vice President, Bus Department As we follow the demonstrations of the 99 percent against the greed and wealth of America’stop one percent, I am reminded of a 1967 speech by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in which Dr. King advocated a transformation “from a thing-oriented society to a person-oriented society.” Each day jobs [...]

Driving a bus ‘a potent stress cocktail’

Morr, Bonnie.2011

By Bonnie MorrAlternate Vice President – Bus Department Operating a bus may be the most stressful job in America. Early in November, 100 Detroit bus operators walked off the job after repeated passenger assaults. In New York, a study found a pattern of physical and verbal assaults on drivers. Add to the fear of being [...]

Fighting the fight for equitable transit funding

Morr, Bonnie.2011

By BONNIE MORRAlternate Vice President, Bus Department As some in Congress seek to slash spending on public transit – the only affordable means for millions of Americans going to and from work – ridership is soaring. The American Public Transit Association says more than five billion trips were taken via public transit during the first [...]

Learning to be better leaders

Bonnie Morr; Morr, Bonnie; Morr

Morr By BONNIE MORR Alternate Vice President, Bus Department Bus Department workshops at the San Antonio and New York regional meetings were among the most informative in many years, and reflect the promise of President Futhey to beef-up and place greater emphasis on those workshops. The workshop on solidarity and uniting of our membership focused [...]

Recipe for success: Safety first

Vic Baffoni; Baffoni, Vic; Baffoni

By Vic BaffoniVice President, Bus Department I recently spoke with UTU Local 1785 (Santa Monica, Calif.) member William Alvarenga, who has driven a motor coach for more than 30 years and who has been commended for his safe and courteous driving record. I asked Brother Alvarenga his recipe for success. “Put safety first and schedule [...]

Pay, benefits keys to better bus safety

Calvin Studivant

By Calvin StudivantAlternate vice president, Bus Department Fatigue management was a topic of significant importance earlier this month at a National Transportation Safety Board forum I attended in Washington, D.C. The troubling news from the forum is that non-union bus operators, employed by so-called low-cost carriers, are being forced to work too many hours, with [...]

Non-union bus drivers need our help

By Calvin StudivantAlternate vice president — Bus Department A tragic bus accident in New York City in March, which killed 15 passengers, has put an unfriendly spotlight on low-fare tour bus drivers. The driver of the ill-fated low-fare tour bus reportedly had previously been charged with driving on a suspended license, and it will be [...]

Troubling times for public transit

Vic Baffoni; Baffoni, Vic; Baffoni

By Vic Baffoni Vice President, Bus Department   These are troubling times for our nation, states and municipalities. Budget problems are forcing cutbacks in a wide variety of public services, and public transit often is targeted for cuts. At the extreme is the union busting going on in Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio and other states. But [...]

Making bus voices heard in Washington

Bonnie Morr; Morr, Bonnie; Morr

By Bonnie MorrAlternate Vice President, Bus Department The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is seeking comments on proposed new rules affecting drivers of commercial motor vehicles, which includes bus operators. The rules cover revocation or disqualification of a commercial driver’s license (CDL) for traffic violations received while operating a personal automobile, and a ban [...]