Laval, QC, March 20, 2020 — Governments must act quickly to ensure that school bus drivers continue to be paid despite school shutdowns.
At the moment, the situation is confusing and varies depending on the school bus company or school board. Some carriers say they will pay workers their full wages the first week of the shutdown and reduce their pay for the following week. Others have simply laid off their drivers.
“The priority right now is to reassure workers,” said the national president of Teamsters Canada, François Laporte. “Governments need to be making sure school bus drivers are paid their full wages until the end of the school year so they can focus on their health and on their family’s well-being.”
“There will be hundreds of thousands of employment insurance claims in the coming days and weeks,” added the union leader. “Paying these drivers their wages until the summer would let public servants handle the barrage of other EI claims.”
Teamsters represent close to 125,000 workers in Canada in all industries. The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, with which Teamsters Canada is affiliated, has 1.4 million members in North America.