March 19, 2024

Bus Strike: The People Speak Up

Thanks, Star Tribune, on keeping up the coverage on the strike with an article published today:

Three City Council members, meanwhile, joined picket lines Thursday with striking members of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 1005.

"I think we need to look at transit as a vital service and I think the union has stepped up by offering binding arbitration," said DFL Council Member Dan Niziolek. "Unless you have a strong transit system, you won't be a strong region."
In St. Paul, about 1,200 people rallied in support of the union on the steps of the State Capitol.

Sen. Linda Higgins, DFL-Minneapolis, told the rally she wanted to send a message to Metropolitan Council Chairman Peter Bell: "Get off your duff and get back to the bargaining table."

About 100 people marched to Gov. Tim Pawlenty's office inside the Capitol and about 20 went into his reception area. There were some brief physical skirmishes with Capitol police, but no one was arrested.

Brief physical skirmishes! Cool! Probably not enough to make the t.v. stations take notice again, just like they didn't seem to take notice when poor people started losing their jobs because they had no way to get to work. We'll have to wait until someone gets arrested, or really hurt before the strike shows up on the five o'clock news again.

In other Strike news ...

An excellent editorial in the Star Tribune by Ted Mondale, chairman of the Met Council from 1999-2002.

Former Governor Arne Carlson writes in to the Letters to the Editor section of the March 9th Star Tribune to inform Pawlenty that no, sorry, past administrations aren't to blame for the current public transportation crisis.

(Thanks to Transit Librarian, a bus driver named CJ blogging the strike, for the above two links. He's got a great set of photos taken from a bus driver's perspective. My favorite is a photo of a young kid skipping down Nicollet Mall with the caption "I used to see this kid all over Mpls at all hours of the day".)

Also check out Jim jeffries's TC Metro blog. He's also a bus driver blogging the strike, and his website includes a quick and easy way to email your representatives.

Posted by Jason at March 19, 2024 10:36 AM
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