• City councilor calls officials' reaction to Boston bus strike 'contemptuous'


    BOSTON (MyFoxBoston.com) -- City Councilor Charles Yancey joined Boston Public School bus drivers at a rally Saturday following the terminations of four of their colleagues.

    Bus drivers claim the city's bus contractor, Veolia Transportation, has violated collective bargaining agreements.

    Veolia Transportation fired two additional drivers accused of organizing an Oct. 8 strike this week, bringing the total of terminated drivers to four.

    The company also plans to send out letters of reprimand to 680 drivers who participated in the strike. The letter will remain in their personnel file for 13 months.

    City officials and the bus company claim the work action was illegal.

    During Saturday's rally, Yancey referenced several other city unions that needed help during disputes in saying the city needs to support the men and women who carry Boston's greatest assets to school each day.

    "We must unify all workers in the city of Boston, must unify and support our school bus drivers and our school bus monitors at this time, because if Veolia is successful at busting this union then who is next?" said Yancey.

    Yancey also shared his displeasure in the reaction from other city officials, including Mayor Thomas Menino, who spoke out against the Oct. 8 job action.

    "I heard what was going on on October 8 and unlike some of my colleagues in government, I did not accept what I heard through the media, I did not accept the contempt and disdain for some of our leaders even coming from our beloved mayor's mouth, but for elected officials including the mayor to condemn our school bus drivers without having the whole story I think that is contemptuous," said the longtime city councilor.

    Boston school bus drivers have publicly voiced their concern over several workplace issues over the past month, including GPS monitoring that allows parents to track their child's bus. Drivers have cited safety and privacy issues in expressing concern for the GPS monitoring system.

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