Fighting for a fair deal

Join the Global campaign to?support Auckland Wharfies

Transit workers across the globe are under attack, threatening our job security, fair wages, strong benefits and union rights. ATU has forged new global partnerships?with transit advocates, labor organizations and other supporters?to fight back.

Earlier this month we launched a global online protest campaign to end the four-month lockout of?ATU Local 1229?members by Acadian Coach Lines in Canada. Almost 7,000 activists across the world joined our campaign and sent emails to executives at?the French multinational Keolis to intervene with its Canadian subsidiary, Acadian, to call for a negotiated solution and end this lockout. This campaign has lead to the two sides going back to the table.

Our brothers and sisters in New Zealand now need?our help. 300 Auckland wharfies, members ofMaritime Union of New Zealand (MUNZ),?are being locked out so that Ports of Auckland Limited (POAL) can contract out their stevedoring work. POAL executives have repeatedly assaulted the rights of these workers, undermining the process of good faith bargaining and attacking working conditions at the port.

A global protest campaign has been launched to call on Auckland Mayor Len Brown to step in and resolve this labor dispute to protect the rights of these workers, their livelihoods, their future and their families.

The ATU is calling on all members and activists to join the global protest now and send an email to the Auckland mayor to show your solidarity with the locked-out Auckland port workers?by clicking?here.


Rapid Transit Grand Opening! Winnipeg, MB

On April the 7th 2,012 it will an historic event in Winnipeg, the new opening of the Rapid Transit Corridor, all employees, family and friends are invited to enjoy of this remarkable event,.

Schedule will be as follow:

1100 Transitway tours start at FRG SW-5

1130 Speeches

1145 Historical Group Photos

1445 Prizes to be drawn

1500 Event closed

Huff Post highlights ATU campaign to target riders

ATU has been working to build a national, pro-transit movement and a recent Huffington Post story featured the innovative campaign. ?This election cycle, the unionized workers that run your public transportation system are doing something a little different. They?re not only turning out the votes of their own membership, they?re pushing for the riders to vote as well,? wrote?Huffington Post?s?Lila Shapiro.

In the story ATU President Larry Hanley discussed ATU?s efforts to mobilize bus riders and sympathetic progressive groups to provide additional bodies to work the bus stops and buses. Shapiro highlighted a successful campaign the ATU began in 2010 in Pensacola, FL, over public transit issues.??Read the full storyhere.

Another transportation bill extension?

It?s been a war of words and not much else on the transportation bill fight in Congress. Rep. Mica, R-FL, and his House GOP cohorts are now proposing another three-month extension of the current bill, while Democrats are calling for the House to take up the ATU-supported two-year Senate bill, which gives states more flexibility in how they spend federal money while rejecting proposed privatization provisions. Even many Senate Republicans are calling for the House to take up their bill including Banking committee ranking member Sen. Richard Shelby, R-AL, who said the extension is ?just kicking the can down the road. I thought we had a good two-year highway bill.? Check? the latest updates.

ATU Supports Occupy April 4 Nat’l Day of Action for Public Transportation

Last week ATU endorsed the Occupy Boston?call for a National Day of Action for Public Transportation?on April 4.? Many events are happening across the country and all ATU locals are encouraged to reach out to their local Occupy general assemblies to get involved. For resources and materials to help in recruiting and planning your event click the following for a?cutomizable recruitment flyer, aFacebook profile photo, and an?event logo.

This is about demanding public transportation for the 99% by spreading the word about the mass transit crisis out to riders and the general public. Check out this?video?of Occupy Boston raising this issue at a recent Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Board meeting.

April 4 marks the anniversary of Dr. King?s assassination, as well as his groundbreaking speech ?Beyond Vietnam: Breaking the Silence,? ATU honors Dr. King?s legacy by joining in national day of action for public transportation equality and advancing his vision for racial and economic equity. To get involved please contact at the?Department of Field Mobilization at 202-537-1645 or?

IP Hanley discusses 2012 elections & ATU strategy on?MSNBC?

?American workers are in a battle for our survival. 99 percent of the American population is in a battle for survival. Unions recognize that and we?re out there organizing,? was the message International President Larry Hanley delivered in an MSNBC interview about the unions and strategy for the 2012 election.??I can speak for transit workers, our plan in 2012 is to get out and organize bus stops and get transit riders to stand up with us and fight back against the incredible barrage of anti-worker activity that?s occurred in our country.? Watch full interview?here.

Locked-out Acadian workers & supporters rally March 27





Acadian Coach Lines bus drivers, members of?Local 1229,?continue to stand strong and united since being locked out by Acadian in early December. Local 1229 President Glen Carr is pushing for negotiations to start earlier than April 29, which Acadian had requested.

In a show of support for the locked out Acadian workers, Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) President Danny Legere will present a check to Local 1229 at a Budget Day rally on March 27 in Fredericton, the capital of New Brunswick, as legislators begin budget talks.

Almost 7,000? supporters have joined our global email campaign to bring attention to this corporate greed and end this labor dispute at Acadian Coach Lines, a subsidiary of French multinational Keolis.?Click here?to join the fight against Acadian and Keolis.

?Stay connnected, win iPad2, ATU jacket
?Don?t get left out! Our first winners of an ATU iPad2 and ATU Jacket have been announced. For your chance to win and more importantly to get the latest ATU news and action alerts sign up at? enter the contest, simply provide your e-mail, local number and postal code. If you have already submitted your email you?re still signed up for the contest, simply click ?Skip and Continue to Website.?

Police say 14 children killed after schoolbus falls into a pond in southern India

HYDERABAD, India – A speeding bus veered off the road and fell into a pond Tuesday, killing at least 14 schoolchildren in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, police said.

Local villagers fished out 14 bodies from the pond next to the road in the small town of Raghavpuram, said S.A. Huda, state director-general of police.

Police and volunteers helped rescue some of the children from the bus, which was partly submerged. There were at least 40 children in the bus when it crashed, Huda said.

The bus driver lost control of the vehicle when he swerved to avoid a head-on collision with a motorcyle, Huda said.

Raghavpuram is about 150 miles (250 kilometres) east of the state capital, Hyderabad.

India has the world’s highest road death toll, with more than 110,000 people dying each year in accidents commonly caused by speeding, overcrowding and poor vehicle and road maintenance, police say.

Indians gather near a school bus that crashed into a canal near Tungaram village in Khammam district, about 250 kilometers west of state capital Hyderabad, India, Tuesday, March 20, 2012. At least 12 children were killed Tuesday when their school bus plunged into a canal in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, police said. (AP Photo)

‘Everybody off, I’ve won EuroMillions!’

A driver walked off his bus mid shift after he discovered his EuroMillions syndicate had won more than ?38million.

He is one of 12 workers based at the Stagecoach bus depot in Corby, Northamptonshire, who celebrated after they won Friday evening’s jackpot.

A party was arranged by syndicate leader Dave Mead who then called in to say that none of the workers would be turning up the next day.

John Noakes, one of the lucky winners, has a passion for Aston Martin cars - now he can afford his ownJohn Noakes, one of the lucky winners, has a passion for Aston Martin cars – now he can afford his own


John gets ready to set off in the dream car. He has no idea what he'll spend his money onJohn gets ready to set off in the dream car. He has no idea what he’ll spend his money on

The whole town was talking about the whopping win which will see each member walk away with about ?3.1million. Social networking sites and forums have been buzzing with the news.

One resident said on Twitter: ’12 Corby based bus drivers scoop the Euromillions last night, the whole town is talking about it, try getting a bus in corby today! lol (sic).’

Another tweeted: ‘Some didn’t turn up for work and one walked off a bus LOL.’

A forum user added: ‘So that’s several millions injected into the local economy, some happy people and more than likely some new bus driver jobs coming up!’

This is the second time the town has had a lottery winner. A few years ago an Avon lady walked away with ?1.3million.

All 12 of the workers are based at the Stagecoach bus depot in Corby, NorthamptonshireAll 12 of the workers are based at the Stagecoach bus depot in Corby, Northamptonshire

A fellow worker at the bus depot told The Sun: ‘You won’t find any of them at work today, that’s for sure. It will be interesting to see if any of them come back.’

One of the winners included John Noakes, 49, who has a passion for cars and has previously posted photos of himself on Facebook under the title: My Aston Martin driving day.

Now the lucky driver, who is married to Jean, can afford to buy his own. He said he has no idea what he was going to buy but added it would take a few days ‘to sink in’.

The others have been named locally as Stephen Derrick, Charlie Gillion, 64, Ally Spence, Charlie Connor, Alex Robertson, 57, and Gary Symington, 36.

Read more:?

ATU endorses President’s re-election

ATU endorses President’s re-election

?President Obama has fought for the things we care about. He has set forth an impressive plan to improve mass transit across our nation, and he has stood with working families in the face of an unprecedented assault on the middle class across the United States,? said ATU International President Larry Hanley in announcing ATU?s endorsement of President Obama for a second term.

Hanley said ATU members will have boots on the ground and will be reaching out to build coalitions with riders to support the Obama campaign. ?We want to be clear: the 190,000 members of the Amalgamated Transit Union are on President Obama?s bus. Together, we will drive him to victory in November,? Hanley said. ?Read full ATU statement?here.

Senate passes transport bill, House urged to do the same

The Senate has passed a transportation bill that sets the right course for transportation policy, giving states more flexibility in how they spend federal money while rejecting proposed privatization provisions. ATU praised the Senate and urged the House to enact similar legislation by March 31, when the current bill expires. ?ATU applauds the Senate for passage of this bill,? said ATU President Larry Hanley. ?We urge the House to follow the Senate?s lead, roll up their sleeves in a bipartisan fashion, and pass a transportation bill that is good for passengers, workers, transit systems and our communities.?

Join ATU?s Americans Care About Transit (ACT) campaign and tell your Member of Congress to pass a comprehensive transportation bill that includes sustainable funding for public transportation. Click?hereto take action now.

Leg Conference – Fight has just begun

ATU is building a national, pro-transit labor movement that will not be denied.? That was the main message that emerged from the ATU?Political & Legislative Conference held March 11 ? 14, in Washington, DC.The conference focused on building and mobilizing coalitions for the battles ahead. An inspiring video ?The Fight Has Just Begun? (watch here) kicked off the conference. Local union leaders attending the conference heard from dynamic speakers including MSNBC?s Ed Schultz, at right with Hanley (watch his speech here), DNC Executive Director Patrick Gaspard, and Peter M. Rogoff, administrator of the Federal Transit Administration.Participants also joined Washington DC area Locals?689?and?1764?members at a rally at the Farragut Metro stops to call attention to DC?s mass transit crisis and the impact of the national mass transit crisis on the Washington metropolitan area as well as places like Chicago, Detroit, and Pittsburgh. Morning rush hour commuters were handed leaflets about the crisis as a stagecoach, representing the future of a mass transit system without adequate funding, circled. Read more?here.

Strikes over in Phoenix, Halifax

There was good news as deals were reached to end the strikes in Halifax and Phoenix.

Halifax buses are rolling and ferries are moving today. After six weeks on the picket lines members of Local508?voted 88 percent to approve the five-year contract this week. The Halifax regional council voted 19-2 in support of the deal. Local 508 President Ken Wilson said the contract wasn?t perfect, but ?I?m happy. I said it?s livable, it was manageable, and it was the way to get people back to work and the buses and the ferries back in service.? Read more?here.

Phoenix bus drivers overwhelmingly voted 397 to 15 to end their six-day strike, and Tempe bus drivers are set to vote today. This ends a labor dispute between Local 1433 and Veolia Transportation Service, which runs half of Valley Metro?s bus routes. The drivers had been working without a contract for 22 months. Michael Cornelius, Local 1433 financial secretary, credits Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton with helping to put pressure on both sides for the breakthrough in negotiations. Read more?here.

Acadian workers still locked out, ITF sends letter of support





It?s been 107 days and counting since Acadian Coach Lines locked out our Local?1229?bus drivers. Acadian asked the union to resume negotiations ? but not until April 29. Local 1229 President Glen Carr says he would like to start talks earlier and has made that request through a mediator. ?Our guys are standing strong, but we are prepared to go back to the table today and end this lockout that has had a major impact on working people and their families throughout New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island,? Carr said.

The International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) has sent a letter in support of the locked out workers to Keolis – the French multinational that operates Acadian, saying, “The ITF supports our affiliate, the ATU, in their desire to resolve this dispute peacefully and urgently,” adding, “We understand that new dates for negotiations have been set but they are as late as the end of April… we are perplexed that Acadian needs such a long time to meet with the union, and wonder what will happen to bus services in the meantime.”

Almost 6,500 supporters have joined our global email campaign to bring attention to this corporate greed and end this labour dispute at Acadian.?Click here?to join the fight against Acadian and Keolis.

?ATU Supports Occupy April 4 National Day of Action for Public Transportation

ATU has endorsed the Occupy Boston?s National Day of Action for Public Transportation on April 4. Occupy Boston is calling on occupations, general assemblies and people?s movements across the country and around the globe to mobilize on April 4 to demand public transportation for the 99%.?ATU locals across the country are working to join with Occupy to take part in these actions. April 4 is the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.?s groundbreaking speech ?Beyond Vietnam: Breaking the Silence? in which he spoke of the connections between war and poverty.?Read more.

Stay connnected, win iPad2, ATU jacket

Our first winners of an ATU iPad2 and ATU jacket have been announced. For your chance to win and more importantly to get the latest ATU news and action alerts sign up at? enter the contest, simply provide your e-mail, local number and postal code. If you have already submitted your email you?re still signed up for the contest, simply click ?Skip and Continue to Website.?

Striking bus drivers say tentative agreement reached (Phoenix, AZ)

PHOENIX — Bus drivers on the picket line reportedly are hearing from their union leaders that a tentative agreement has been reached in the five-day-old bus strike and a vote is expected Thursday.

Representatives of?Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1433?and?Veolia Transportation Services?sat down Tuesday to try and hammer out a contract after 22 months of negotiations culminated in a strike.

More than 900 bus drivers in Phoenix and Tempe walked off the job over the weekend, stranding thousands of riders all over the Valley who rely on bus service to get to and from work and school.

Veolia operates half of Valley Metro’s bus routes.

The major points of contention in the contentious contract negotiations have been wages, sick-leave accrual, retirement benefits and health-care coverage.

Representatives from both sides are expected to come together again Wednesday to put the final touches on the new proposed contract. Details were expected by the end of the day.

According to bus drivers who are walking the picket line, their union leaders are urging them to approve the coming proposal. That vote is expected Thursday.

“We will know later on today exactly what we’ll be getting,” said Frank Zuckerbrow, ATU?Local 1433 chief steward. “What we heard, though, is that it went good. This is the first time we all got together that there was significant progress since July 1, 2010, the first time that the leadership has benn able to say that they’re going to have a vote and that they can recommend the contract.”

While Veolia has continually said that it has offered a “generous” package, drivers said the company had been bargaining in “bad faith” and that they have been fighting to keep benefits they already have.

“We’ve been working without a contract because we have a relationship with our passengers,” said longtime driver Patricia Moore Tuesday morning, before representatives from both sides met. “I feel bad about leaving my passengers out there. But we’ve got to do what we’ve to do. The things that they’re doing to us, it’s unacceptable.”

“We want a fair contract,” fellow driver Carla Johnson said on Monday, the first workday of the strike.

Based on what the union leaders were telling their members Wednesday morning, they’re getting just that.

Bus drivers told 3TV’s Tess Rafols that if all goes well, they could be back on the road as soon as Friday.

The strike has reduced bus service to just a fraction of its normal level for the past several days.

While the Light Rail is not affected by the strike and is running normally, Valley Metro has been advising its 200,000 daily bus riders to make alternate arrangements for transportation whenever possible.

If you have questions for Valley Metro, you can contact customer service at? 602-253-5000.–142619146.html