BC Transit workers in Whistler, Squamish and Pemberton issue strike notice

Transit users in B.C.’s Sea-to-Sky region are being warned to expect potential disruptions as early as next week, after the union that represents transit workers in the region issued 72-hour strike notice.

BC Transit said “the timing and extent of potential job action and its impacts on transit services” in Squamish, Whistler and Pemberton remained unclear as of Friday.

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“However, job action has the potential to disrupt transit services and our customers’ ability to use the public transit services,” it said.

“HandyDART service in Squamish, which is deemed an essential service, will operate with full service hours on weekdays.”

Unifor Local 114, which represents BC Transit workers employed by contractors Whistler Transit Ltd. and Diversified Transit, said members in the Sea-to-Sky region suffer from a “wage gap” compared to workers doing the same jobs in Vancouver or Victoria.

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“Whistler’s skyrocketing housing costs have raised the stakes for our members and have left them little choice but to draw a line in the sand with this employer,” Unifor national president Jerry Dias said in a media release.

The union says 80 members of Whistler voted to strike in August, and that wages, a lack of benefits for 40 per cent of members in the unit, pension and job security were its key issues.

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