April 30, 2016

TTD, SMART, labor unions urge DOT to protect bus & transit operators from assault

Ed Wytkind, President of TTD, AFL-CIO, John Previsich, President of SMART Transportation Division and other union leaders have released a joint letter to Anthony Foxx, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), urging the DOT to issue a rule “to protect bus drivers and other transit operators from the physical assaults that are plaguing […]

TTD urges federal protection of airline workers

Edward Wytkind, President of TTD, AFL-CIO, submitted a letter to the U.S. Senate, urging them to support the Cantwell Amendment. ” This amendment expands the current law that protects airport security personnel from assaults to also protect airline customer service representatives, including gate and ticket agents,” stated Wytkind. Read the complete letter here.  

AFL-CIO leader: “Don’t be fooled” by Trump

Just because Donald Trump has tapped into the “justifiable anger” of the working class, doesn’t mean he is, or ever will be, a champion of the working class, warns Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO. “Trump isn’t interested in solving our problems,” said Trumka.  Read the complete story here.          

Bus driver attacked in Edina, Minn., sustains head injuries

On April 3 the Star Tribune reported that a Metro Transit bus driver was assaulted by several teenagers in a noontime attack at the Southdale stop in Edina, Minn. According to authorities, the driver sustained potentially ‘life altering’ head injuries. Read the entire story here.

SMART, others fight proposal that eliminates Seattle rail yards, manufacturing

The Seattle Times reported that backers of a Seattle bylaw, which prohibits the use of city funds to finance sports venues, plan to push for a strengthened ballot measure to help block a proposed arena in Sodo District. SMART TD Washington State Legislative Director Herb Krohn, who is against the proposal because it could eradicate […]

Minn. SLD Qualy, “CP fatalities preventable”

Fox 9 reports that a fatality that occurred last week during a crew change on Canadian Pacific may have been preventable. In an interview with the news channel, Minnesota State Legislative Director Phil Qualy said that CP could have taken action to move the crew changes to a safer area, but took no action. Qualy […]

Amtrak crash in Pa., two dead, many injured

Amtrak train 89 struck a backhoe this morning in Chester, Pa., just south of Philadelphia. Of the 341 passengers on board around 35 were injured. The two that died were the backhoe operator and a supervisor. Family members of those on board can call 800-523-9101 to inquire about their loved ones. Travel along the Northeast Corridor has […]

SMART TD News March issue available now

The March 2016 issue of the SMART Transportation Division News is now available online only. Submissions for the May 2016 issue are being accepted now through April 15. Submissions can be emailed to news_td@smart-union.org. Submissions are also accepted through U.S. mail:      SMART Transportation Division,      SMART TD News,      24950 Country […]

Metro could shut down lines for maintenance

The Washington Post reported that Metro’s top officials warned that its transit system is in such need of repair that entire rail lines might have to be shut down for maintenance, for as long as six months. This could potentially impact thousands of daily commuters and worsen traffic congestion in the region. Read the entire […]

Big labor win: Supreme Court rules in favor of union fees

Reuters reported that the U.S. Supreme Court, in a 4-4 split decision, ruled in favor of public sector unions by preserving the legal precedent of agency fees, which are a vital source of cash for organized labor. Read the entire story here.