Unbelievable! Union representing Blue Bus operators & mechanics shocked that West Vancouver District rejects Labour Relations Board appointment of mediator in stalled talks; ATU 134 says it's impossible to negotiate without mediator.

Press Release                                                                                                                           

February 25, 2022

WEST VANCOUVER – Unbelievable!  That’s the reaction from the union representing Blue Bus operators and mechanics after West Vancouver District filed an objection rejecting the BC Labour Relations Board appointing a mediator to assist stalled talks for a new contract.

On Thursday, West Vancouver District’s lawyers filed an objection to the LRB’s appointment of a mediator – requested by the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 134 after the union filed an unfair labour practice complaint against West Vancouver for refusing to meet its legal obligation to begin bargaining for a new collective agreement, which expires in 34 days.

“It hardly stands for any employer, let alone a municipality like West Vancouver, to fail to commence collective bargaining as the BC Labour Code requires, to fail to even agree on dates for bargaining with the union, and then to insist that the union cannot request the assistance of a neutral LRB mediator – simply because bargaining has not commenced,” said Cornel Neagu, president of ATU Local 134, which represents 150 bus operators, mechanics and maintenance workers. 

“What the heck is wrong with West Vancouver? Neagu added.  “Our union even had to file an unfair labour practice against West Vancouver after it refused to exchange bargaining proposals on time, as required by the law,”

The union says it felt that the appointment of LRB mediator Christina Bains earlier this week at the union’s request could be helpful to get talks started but West Vancouver’s objections to even her role are discouraging in the extreme.

“We unfortunately have no trust in West Vancouver District any more after these very disappointing actions trying to frustrate our necessity to bargain a new collective agreement,” said Neagu.  “We can only deal with West Vancouver with the assistance of a neutral mediator – otherwise we will have to prepare for all possible actions to get to a new contract.”


For more information: Bill Tieleman, West Star Communications, cell 778-896-0964 or email [email protected]