ttc strike

TTC CEO remains 'hopeful' as strike threatens to shut down Toronto

Strike fears loom over the heads of public transit users in Toronto following news that the union representing more than 10,000 transit workers in the city had taken a "first step toward strike action" on Monday.

Talks have been ongoing since the expiration of a collective agreement between the TTC and Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 113 on March 31, though things took a turn on Monday when the union announced it had applied for a conciliator with the province's Ministry of Labour.

In its statement, the ATU argues that "the TTC is refusing to align with ATU Local 113 on the key priorities of transit workers, including job security, wages and benefits."

Things may look grim, but TTC CEO Rick Leary remains optimistic that a deal will be reached.

Leary released his own statement on Monday, commenting that the transit agency is engaged in "ongoing negotiations with ATU 113 and we are hopeful that we will reach a fair, negotiated deal."

Leary acknowledged the ATU's statement, and while it indeed represents the union moving a step closer to a strike, the TTC CEO says the transit agency is "pleased to see they are committed to staying at the bargaining table with us to reach an agreement and avoid job action."

"We value the work all our 17,000 employees do to deliver safe and reliable service to millions of riders every week — the employees who are members of ATU 113, the TTC's largest union partner, are a critical part of our operations and this relationship is important to us," the statement continues.

Leary added that the TTC "will continue to negotiate in good faith and we look forward to ongoing talks at the bargaining table."

The provincial government had previously deemed the TTC an essential service, removing workers' rights to strike. However, a court ruling voided this designation in 2023, restoring the union's right to take job action.

The ATU isn't the only union representing TTC workers threatening a strike, as CUPE Local 2, which represents over 650 electricians and other tradespeople working for the transit agency, could also go on strike as early as April 22.

Lead photo by

Jack Landau


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