Yesterday I wrote about CTA complaints, what the most common ones are, and how complaints seem to be trending down this year. The next logical question is, what does the CTA do about these complaints, particularly if the complaints are found to be legitimate and are caused by an employee.
Four of the five top complaints -- other than those related to Chicago Card/Plus and fares -- are directly related to employee behavior. They are (with the number of complaints lodged between Jan. 1 and June 30 noted in parenthesis):
- Pass-ups, where a driver passes a rider waiting at a bus stop (906).
- Ruder operators (882).
- Reckless driving (653).
- Failure to assist customers (567).
Once a complaint is received, it is logged into a database and forwarded to the responsible department for response, and, if warranted, investigation and disciplinary action. Investigative techniques could include viewing available security camera footage and Control Center reports, and conducting employee interviews.
If the complaint is founded, union agreements outline a course of progressive discipline:
- First offense - written warning
- Second offense - written warning with one-day suspension
- Third offense - corrective case interview/probation and three-day suspension
- Fourth offense - recommendation for discharge
Of course, some incidents may warrant an accelerated discipline process, such as an employee operating a CTA vehicle while using or displaying an unauthorized electronic device.
Finally, a stat that may shock KevinB: The CTA reports that it's doing much better this year at closing out and settling customer complaints. In April of 2008, it had not closed 10% of complaints; in May of 2009, that statistic improved to 3%.
Check out all the CTA's Performance Metric Reports here.