Burlington area bus drivers did not strike Monday, but community members worry the threat of a strike is still very real. Many people spoke out Monday night at the Burlington City Council meeting, saying they have major issues with the current CCTA contract and that a strike may happen this week.
Concerned residents and a group of Burlington High School Students gathered in City Hall to show their support for the CCTA bus drivers. The CCTA and the union have been at odds over working hours, the hiring of part-time drivers and working conditions. But a contract proposal delivered Sunday temporarily stopped the drivers from going on strike. Monday, many argued the contract is still not good enough. A petition created by students at Burlington High School to support the men and women who drive them to school was given to the mayor Monday night with more than 500 signatures.
"That's close to 50 percent of the students at Burlington High School signed the petition in just one day with overwhelming support. It is a clear message of support from the students of Burlington High School to the CCTA bus drivers. If the management forces the drivers to strike, the strike will drastically hurt students' ability to get to and from school," said Burlington High School Senior Henry Prine.
"All those of you who actually have pro-union principles, pro-worker principles should do more than that-- you should stand with the bus drivers in their fight for a fair, humane and good contract," said CCTA driver supporter Ashley Smith.
In a statement issued by CCTA Sunday following the proposed deal, the company said it remains committed to resolving their differences and reaching an agreement on a new collective bargaining agreement.
The current contract proposal must now be voted on by the drivers, which is expected to take place Wednesday or Thursday.