TORONTO, ONTARIO – Carlos Santos, President of Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) Local 113, which represents close to 12,000 TTC workers, released the following statement in response to the Ontario Superior Court of Justice’s decision to deny the union’s request to pause the enforcement of the TTC’s mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy.
“We are very disappointed with the Court’s decision to deny our request to suspend operation of the TTC’s mandatory vaccination policy. We believe the TTC’s policy of suspending and terminating unvaccinated workers is unfair and will be struck down at arbitration. While I had hoped the Court would put a stop to this policy while we fought in arbitration, I am confident we will ultimately prevail.
This fight has never been about vaccinations, but rather about defending rights and saving jobs while still protecting public health.
Instead of firing workers, the TTC can keep our workplace safe by offering regular testing for the small percentage of workers who do not wish to receive the vaccine. This measure has already been successfully executed with Mississauga Transit and Brampton Transit and can be safely adopted in Toronto as well.
These workers need their jobs and Toronto needs these workers. The TTC’s next plan is to terminate workers and cut service. Transit riders need the service we provide – and these workers are key to providing that service.
ATU Local 113’s first priority is and always will be protecting our members’ rights and their health and safety. We will explore all available options to defend our members from unreasonable and unfair policies, and discipline imposed without just cause.”