California’s ORANGE (KABC) The union that represents maintenance workers for the Orange County Transportation Authority declared a strike on Monday after leaving the negotiating table. Meetings between OCTA and Teamsters Local 952 have been taking place in an effort to settle contract disputes, particularly those involving pay and benefits.
In a statement about the strike on Wednesday, Teamsters Local 952 Secretary-Treasurer Eric Jimenez claimed that OCTA had given them “no other alternative.” We have taken every precaution to prevent a strike,” Jimenez stated. Even our suggestions that could have saved them money on their members’ medical expenses were disregarded. But on Monday, OCTA left the table, leaving us with no other option.
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A strike, according to the Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA), is “unnecessary” and “unfairly affects bus customers and more than 1,000 OCTA employees,” the agency stated in a statement alerting Orange County commuters to the impending strike.
According to Joel Zlotnik, an OCTA representative, “We have over 100,000 riders a day, so these are individuals who are going to work, who are going to school, they have no other means to move around, truly this is their only option for transportation.” We got their most recent proposal, were studying it, had plans, and requested them to meet with us again on Friday.
While respecting the employees’ right to strike, Orange County Supervisor Katrina Foley told Eyewitness News that she is asking OCTA to reconsider. She said, “I want everyone back at the table.” “I want the OCTA leadership to understand that health care prices have gone up, the cost of living has gone up, and we need to adjust in order to take care of our employees, who are responsible for making sure the system works for everyone working out in Orange County. Here in Orange County, this is a significant problem.
The 150 mechanics, service technicians, and machinists offer a range of services, from refueling buses to fixing things. Beginning on Thursday, Nov. 3, all bus services throughout the county will be suspended, according to OCTA.
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