Wednesday, July 27, 2016

ATU757 officers at today's Trimet board meeting


Shirley Block and Jonathan Hunt

Mary Longoria

Anthony Forster

1 comment:

The Deacon in Blue said...

Very good speeches here, sorry I couldn't attend. It is true that as an operator, I cannot in good conscience recommend this job to another, because we're all afraid of losing more benefits. New operators have already been "thrown in front of the bus", so to speak, by their retirement benefits being all but removed. To operate a bus or LRV is physically devastating to many. Does this mean TM wants to replace us with technology allowing buses to be operated via artificial intelligence? I hope not, but management's utter disrespect of us suggests they'd rather not have to deal with us at all. (The argument remains here that if you replace humans with robots, what jobs will be left for those of us in the ever-shrinking middle class? Try having an economy where the majority of people have NO work.)

To encourage someone to sign on with TM these days is different from when I was "recruited" by a bus operator several years ago. Back then, TM hadn't reneged on its pension promises, health care was paid for by the agency, and people enjoyed both their jobs and the security it provided. Many "old timers" are choosing to leave before more cuts to retiree benefits are made, and new operators don't have the golden "Cadillac" nest egg awaiting them upon retirement as our GM does. It would seem both obvious and necessary that TM would encourage cleaning up the mess of employee relations its union-busting tactics have caused before making grand plans to expand services. Respected employees make the best recruiters, as our officers stated.

Thank you ATU757 for speaking out today. I'm hoping that someday things will change. First, our GM needs to drive a bus. Second, our board needs to be elected by the people it "serves". Third, we deserve to be not only heard, but respected.