With no talks since before the service cuts went into effect two weeks
ago, the CTA bus and rail operator unions so far are holding firm in
opposition to giving up 3.5% raises this year and taking 10 furlough
days off, among other CTA demands.
Meanwhile, two South Side reverands who often have stood together on
issues of worker rights find themselves on different sides in this.
The Rev. Michael Pfleger on Friday urged the unions to give back this
year’s raise and take the furlough days off. He said that as he stood
with some laid-off union workers. From the Tribune story:
“This is not a time for the CTA or the unions to play tough guy at the
expense of people’s lives,” he said. “I am asking everybody to go back
to the table … before time goes on and people become comfortable with
the problems we have, while forgetting the real faces of those who lost
On the other side, the Rev. Jesse Jackson said he thinks the unions are
being asked to give up too much. And he continues to invoke racial
images. From the Sun-Times:
“We want to work with dignity,” Jackson told the cheering crowd. “In
slavery days, everybody had a job, but they did not have dignity.”
There are reports that the union and CTA will meet Tuesday. I’ll believe it when I see it.