Strike Contact

Strike Out

Employees of our city’s transit system held a strike last Monday giving little to no warning to the public at all, practically bringing the city to a halt.

In my opinion, this was probably the worst way to get support. Unless their idea of support is to have their entire ridership pissed off at them, in which case they definitely succeeded. People had to cab it, bike it, or walk to work. Unless they couldn’t, in which case they were forced to stay home and miss a day.

I had no problem in regards to work as I have a great high-speed connection from home, so I spent the day working in very comfortable clothes.

The strike was illegal from what I understand, and ended in the early afternoon.

The funniest* thing about this whole strike happened just a few days ago.

Our transit system has something called a Metropass. You essentially buy a monthly pass on a swipe card that is good for unlimited travel.

The transit system made an announcement that they would refund people money for their troubles during the strike. This sounds like a great thing. Of course, they announced this after that pass ran out. Most people usually ditch their passes at the end of the month, leaving the fate of their cards in the hands of waste disposal.

Nice job, folks.

I used to defend our transit system. Now I am not so sure.

After having been to DC, ours looks pretty shoddy.



The End of Contact

This is the last week of my show at Axis.

Come Friday I will be most likely taking my lunch break to go over there and remove everything from the walls and bring them home.

A good number of people wrote in the guest book, which is very cool.

Not sure when the next show is going to be. As usual, I will keep people updated on that. At this point, though, it doesn’t look like it’s going to be happening anytime soon.





* – By funniest I mean most idiotic.

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13 Responses

  1. Our system is so simple – East West North South, that I wonder why it’s so hard to manage it. In tokyo for example you can travel anywhere in the city by subway alone. If you need to travel a small distance on the rail system you pay accordanly. The further you travel the more it costs. What a concept. One day of free service from say…9am to 10am and 4pm to 6pm for example might of been a better idea as a pay back to the public. Why just montly pass owners compensated? I buy tokens for every trip.

  2. Actually, I think they made the announcement for the refund the very next day…so still in May. Originally, I heard that it was going to be $5, but they decreased it to $4. So while the TTC can be retarded, they didn’t goof that one up. ($4 Starbucks ice grande latte, here I come!)

  3. If they announced it, I didn’t hear anything about it.

  4. Yup they announced it..heard it on the radio and also on CP 24. There was a great article in the Saturday Star on the w/end on subway systems all over the world, specifically Singapore, Madrid and Paris. Vancouver has the same idea as Tokyo..you pay according to zones and therefore the more zones you travel, the more you pay.
    We should take a lesson from the rest of the world on how to improve as opposed to thinking that we know it all.

  5. I feel that there is a huge problem when the local transit authority thinks its ok to just walk off the job and strand people. Commuting is now a part of life that is becoming more and more unavoidable with the rising cost of real estate. More and more people have to commute from farther and farther away to make ends meet. This is one of the most inconsiderate and selfish things I’ve heard in a long time. They say all is fair in love and war, but it seems that big business feel that this statement applies to their practices as well, especially if its a business that is in some way government regulated. Here the rates keep going up but the service never seems to get any better. I’m not sure what I am paying for, maybe I can send them my husband to investigate 😉

    sorry for ranting, public transportation really pisses me off.

  6. Do I dare say it and risk the wrath from the masses? OK, here it goes:

    Unions.

    That is what we are paying for. That’s what propagates the terrible mentality of these people. That is what causes the bad attitudes.

    The concept of being rewarded for hard work rather than the amount of time one is employed just seems to be lost on (most)unionized people.

    Maybe I’m just envious of job security….but walking out on a job that should be considered “essential services” is down-right disgusting.

  7. Coming from an Union position, I whole heartly agree with Mrs. J on her take on things. Unions leaders have more power to persuade workers than the CEOs and Directors of some companies. If you ever get in a way of a Union (like I had the misfortune of doing when voting no against a strike) they will NEVER let you forget it.

    With terminology of Brothers and Sisters, they try to persuade you that losing two weeks pay will benefit you even if you are against the cause they are selling.

    I really don’t think this is a decision by all the rank and file, after all a lot of the driver’s showed up to work.

    Unions – Great Idea in the 30, 40s, and 50s but it’s now time for a change.

  8. Someone should organize a media photo op and have as many people as possible all enter a subway at once and pay 1 dollar to enter the subway in protest over Monday’s TTC shutdown. Show them we can also organize, even without a union.

  9. Ah yes, the DC metro system. Ever so shiny and clean. But it doesn’t reach out nearly as far as it usefully should for an effective commuter system. And spokes on a wheel, without the rim to link across them? Such a severe handicap/impediment is certainly one way to cut out the crowding of excessive overuse.

  10. While I was still living on the mainland back in aught-one, Greater Vancouver had a transit strike. Unlike the Toronto version, they at least made the empty threat for a month before the threat turned out to be not-so-empty. As you noted, snap-strikes in no way get public support, especially when the people who aren’t striking are forced to give up a paycheque or worse.

    However, like the Toronto version, the Vancouver transit strike still stank monkey balls. I still hold a grudge against TransLink for making me walk uphill both ways (damn hilly roads!) to get my groceries.

  11. Oh Toronto Transit. How I miss thee.

    (I was actually just gonna call y’all a bunch of suckers, but then it was quite likely that one of you would find me and punch me in the arse, so instead I’ll say: Stupid TTC! Poor Toronto!)

  12. With the transit situation being so volatile and my commute growing longer and longer every month I obviously need someone to blame (cause I am like that). My wife, who originally hails from Phoenix AZ, weaves a tale of this magical place where building developers are forced to improve highways and city infrastructure before they are granted permits to build (to minimize impact on the surrounding areas). There is nothing like this in place here. The GTA is building houses at an astounding rate with no plans to improve highways or transit. Disaster is the only destination that can be assured.

    As for unions, I don’t have especially nice things to say either. Originally put in place to protect workers, most industry needs the protection now. Not to be elitist but there are some lower-skilled jobs that don’t need to make $24/hr.

  13. Buon luogo, congratulazioni, il mio amico!

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