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January 16th, 2009:

The transit strike may end – IF the City agrees

The Citizen is reporting that the end of the strike may be near if a proposal put forth by the ATU is accepted.

Under the proposal, the issue of work scheduling that led to the strike would be put into a separate mediation-like process where both sides would state their goals and try to come up with an agreed-upon solution over a period of time.

The rest of the outstanding issues — wages, accounting for sick days and contracting-out language — would go to binding arbitration, Mr. Graham said. He added that if the city agrees, the union’s leaders will consult their members to get approval to proceed and the strike could be over almost immediately.

“We could have the vote in hours,” he said.

City officials are getting together a respons to the union’s proposal. Agreeing would require the municipality to back down on principles it has maintained since the outset of the strike and that city council reaffirmed unanimously at a council meeting Thursday.

The city maintains that the scheduling issue, because it has financial implications, must be part of an overall agreement, and that all aspects of any agreement must fit within the total financial envelope represented in its last offer, which was rejected by the union.

For the city to agree to the union’s proposal to end the strike, the city would have to abandon these two principles and take its chances in arbitration and in the mediation-like process to deal with scheduling.

It would likely require a city council meeting to approve agreeing to the union’s offer to end the strike.

Put an end to this nonsense. Call your Councillor and tell them that!


OC Transpo strike – hassle your Councillor!

We have little power to get the morons in the ATU off their collective butts, but we DO have some power over our elected officials.

Maybe, just maybe, the Council will move a little faster if enough of us bombard them with emails and calls. It’s worth a try, isn’t it?

CALL or Email your Councillor and tell them that


City Councillors

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Councillor Georges BédardCouncillor Georges Bédard
Ward 12 – Rideau-Vanier

Tel: 613-580-2482
Fax: 613-580-2522
Councillor Michel BellemareCouncillor Michel Bellemare
Ward 11 – Beacon Hill-Cyrville

Tel: 613-580-2481
Fax: 613-580-2521
Councillor Rainer Bloess Councillor Rainer Bloess
Ward 2 – Innes

Tel: 613-580-2472
Fax: 613-580-2512
Councillor Glenn BrooksCouncillor Glenn Brooks
Ward 21 – Rideau-Goulbourn

Tel: 613-580-2491
Fax: 613-580-2531
Councillor Rick ChiarelliCouncillor Rick Chiarelli
Ward 8 – College

Tel: 613-580-2478
Fax: 613-580-2518
Councillor Alex CullenCouncillor Alex Cullen
Ward 7 – Bay

Tel: 613-580-2477
Fax: 613-580-2517
Councillor Diane DeansCouncillor Diane Deans
Ward 10 – Gloucester-Southgate

Tel: 613-580-2480
Fax: 613-580-2520
Councillor Steve DesrochesCouncillor Steve Desroches
Ward 22 – Gloucester-South Nepean

Tel: 613-580-2751
Fax: 613-580-2761
Councillor Clive DoucetCouncillor Clive Doucet
Ward 17 – Capital

Tel: 613-580-2487
Fax: 613-580-2527
Councillor Eli El-Chantiry
Ward 5 – West Carleton-March

Tel: 613-580-2475
Fax: 613-580-2515
Councillor Peggy Feltmate
Ward 23 – Kanata South

Tel: 613-580-2752
Fax: 613-580-2762
Councillor Jan HarderCouncillor Jan Harder
Ward 3 – Barrhaven

Tel: 613-580-2473
Fax: 613-580-2513
Councillor Diane HolmesCouncillor Diane Holmes
Ward 14 – Somerset

Tel: 613-580-2484
Fax: 613-580-2524
Councillor Peter HumeCouncillor Peter Hume
Ward 18 – Alta Vista

Tel: 613-580-2488
Fax: 613-580-2528
Councillor Gord HunterCouncillor Gord Hunter
Ward 9 – Knoxdale-Merivale

Tel: 613-580-2479
Fax: 613-580-2519
Councillor Rob JellettCouncillor Rob Jellett
Ward 19 – Cumberland

Tel: 613-580-2489
Fax: 613-580-2697
Councillor Christine LeadmanCouncillor Christine Leadman
Ward 15 – Kitchissippi

Tel: 613-580-2485
Fax: 613-580-2525
Councillor Jacques LegendreCouncillor Jacques Legendre
Ward 13 – Rideau-Rockcliffe

Tel: 613-580-2483
Fax: 613-580-2523
Councillor Maria McRaeCouncillor Maria McRae
Ward 16 – River

Tel: 613-580-2486
Fax: 613-580-2526
Councillor Bob MonetteCouncillor Bob Monette
Ward 1 – Orléans

Tel: 613-580-2471
Fax: 613-580-2511
Councillor Shad QadriCouncillor Shad Qadri
Ward 6 – Stittsville-Kanata West

Tel: 613-580-2476
Fax: 613-580-2516
Councillor Doug ThompsonCouncillor Doug Thompson
Ward 20 – Osgoode

Tel: 613-580-2490
Fax: 613-580-2530
Councillor Marianne WilkinsonCouncillor Marianne Wilkinson
Ward 4 – Kanata North

Tel: 613-580-2474
Fax: 613-580-2514

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City opts for new, uh, “direction” in the transit strike… wtf?

According to the Citizen, negotiations and tactics are taking a whole new direction in an effort to end the 30-whatever day old strike by the ATU .

As much as I lay the bulk of the blame on the union for this mess that has cost city residents money, imperilled their safety, forced businesses to close or lay off staff and has generally been a big pain in the ass, the City (read: mayorlarry) shares some of the fault as well. They have steadfastedly refused to budge from their position, and while this may be the principled action that most Ottawans agree with, it has ceased to be practical.

Now, after a 15 hour in-camera session, the Council (read: mayorlarry) has come up with the following:

They (the union) were seething at the municipality’s new bargaining direction — the possible hiring of a “fact finder” to look into scheduling issues — and furious that city officials continue to question the union’s interpretation of the impact the city’s proposed changes to policies on scheduling, route assignment, working conditions and hours of work would have on their members’ lives.

That’s it? A third party “fact-finder”. And it will take at least TWO FREAKIN’ WEEKS!??

We put our Council reps into office because we deem them to be qualified as forward thinkers, strategists, pragmatists and problem-solvers, right? A long time ago, yours truly had the privilege of serving on a municipal council in a small township in the Parry Sound area of Ontario. I, and my fellow Councillors were indeed expected to respond to issues appropriately and  in a timely fashion. If, for example, a culvert got washed out because a beaver dam burst upstream, we wouldn’t hire a “fact-finder” to discover if the culvert had changed the flow of a stream and had thus hurt the quality of the beaver’s lives… we’d send out a crew to put in a new FREAKIN’ CULVERT!

Ottawans – DEMAND that your Councillor – elected to take action – actually lives up to his or her responsibilities and DO something to END this nonsense!

Ah – venting feels so good! I love my blog!