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Union Broke Their Word: Miller

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Age: 57
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 26, 2008 4:43 pm    Post subject: Union Broke Their Word: Miller Reply with quote

Saturday April 26, 2008
CityNews.ca Staff

"He broke his word." That's all Mayor David Miller has to say about Amalgamated Transit Union President Bob Kinnear.

The union had promised 48 hours notice before any job action, but that wasn't the case Friday night. When TTC workers voted down an agreement by 65 per cent, they shut down service almost immediately.

In an interview with CP24, Miller wouldn't talk about the president much more: "I won't speak to him over the air. I spoke to him directly [Friday] night. He broke his word. We agreed to 48 hours notice. We don't believe it is responsible to shut down the TTC."

Nevertheless, union and management will be back at the bargaining table Saturday afternoon. Miller says that's an impossible situation.

"The TTC negotiators, professional negotiators, bargained fairly [last week]. They reached a settlement. It was a fair settlement. They presented it to the members. And they have a duty to make sure they deliver," he said.

To make sure the trains are running on time, Miller contact Premier Dalton McGuinty.

"The Premier was terrific. I indicated the circumstances, that the union had broken the agreement to 48 hours notice.it makes impossible to solve the problem.The premier agreed and he is acting as quickly as possible to bring in the legislation."

When asked if he had seen the proposed documents, Miller commented that it wouldn't be appropriate for him to see it before it was made public.

"But in the past, they recommend appointment of an arbitrator and they put in place certain rules and you fight in front of the arbitrator."

While he pondered elminating the right to strike, he noted that's not a clear-cut decision. Miller said that if the right to strike was taken away from the union, the city would move more quickly - but much more expensively.

"The arbitrators tend to be more generous than parties freely bargaining."

Finally, Miller had a few words for the people of Toronto.

"The first thing I want to say is thank you. People were amazing last night. They were given no notice about this. They were upset as I was, but they got home safely and there were no incidents. And secondly, we're doing everything we can to solve this."
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