TORONTO, ONTARIO – (March 6, 2020) – Carlos Santos, President of Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 113, released the following statement regarding the confirmed case of a patient with the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) who travelled on the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) system on March 2, 3 and 4:
“Our thoughts are with all those who have been affected by COVID-19 here in Toronto and elsewhere in the world. Like everyone, we hope the virus will be contained soon. Until COVID-19 is contained, the TTC and public health officials need to do everything they can to protect TTC workers and riders.
Given the importance of this public health issue, ATU Local 113 will continue to work with the TTC to ensure workers and riders remain safe on our public transit system. Our union has offered to extend overtime hours for increased TTC vehicle cleaning and disinfection.
With a COVID-19 case confirmed on the TTC system, ATU Local 113 calls on TTC management to allow workers to protect themselves by wearing masks on the job. The TTC should focus less on public perception and more on public health. Transit workers have the right to protect their health in the same way TTC riders do by wearing masks on subways, streetcars and buses. ATU Local 113 will back members 110 per cent if they need to protect themselves by wearing a mask at work.”