HandyDART accepts Vince Ready's binding arbitration decision

MVT looks forward to working with employees to provide great service for customers

VANCOUVER, Jan. 15 /CNW/ - MVT Canadian Bus, the provider of HandyDART services in Metro Vancouver, announced today that the Arbitrator Vince Ready has issued a decision setting the terms and conditions for a collective agreement with the Union.

"In the interest of serving our passengers, MVT and the ATU agreed to binding arbitration and today we have received Mr. Ready's decision," said John Siragusa, Vice President Operations. "Binding arbitration enabled us to reach a first agreement with the ATU and resume providing high-quality and reliable transportation services to everyone who relies on HandyDART," added Siragusa.

MVT and the ATU had been in negotiations since January 1, 2009. The strike began on October 25, 2009. While an agreement had been reached by the negotiating committees for both parties, it was voted down by the ATU's membership on December 23, 2009.

In an effort to resolve the outstanding issues, both parties agreed to have Vince Ready mediate on December 29, 2009. After a full day of mediation on December 30, 2009, MVT and the ATU agreed to binding arbitration. Mr. Ready's decision was issued on January 13, 2010.

"We are happy that an agreement has been reached which includes the municipal pension plan as well as increases of 16 to 18 per cent over the next four years for all of our employees," said Siragusa. "We know this has been difficult for many of our employees and we look forward to working with them to provide the caring service our passengers have come to expect," added Siragusa.

MVT's HandyDART service provides transportation to customers who are unable to use public transit without assistance, including many seniors, the seriously ill and persons with cognitive or physical disabilities. HandyDART is the only means of transportation for many of its customers.


For further information: For further information: Media Contact: Zdenka Buric, (604) 619-4344 or zburic@national.ca

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