You Did It!

Today, November 18, 2021, the Union and the City of Edmonton jointly announced the saving of about 110 ATU members’ jobs! Cleaners, Service persons, your jobs are safe. What the announcement didn’t cover is that the Fare Maintainers’ jobs have been made safe, too.
Who gets the credit?
That’s who. You stood up. You stood together. You smiled for your photos and signed your names. You wore buttons. You voted NO. You rallied, you emailed Councillors. You declared “I’m in”! You did it.


All year long we’ve been working to accomplish this end, to save these jobs. At first, we were a bit tentative, even a bit suspicious. What’s this “I’m In” bit? Remember that? But over and over, you trusted the Core Team and stepped forward to declare you’re in. “In” to save sisters’ and brothers’ jobs. “In” to win a great contract. “In” to stand together as a force for fairness in our workplaces.


Who can forget that famous photo of then-Mayor Iveson trying to brag to the media about money that had been announced a year earlier and take credit for it again? Looking over his shoulder to see what? FIFTEEN HUNDRED ATU members demanding that he “Stop Contracting Out Our Work”. Remember that? Classic.

Credit goes, too, to the Core Team. The Core Team is a group of ordinary union members, stewards, executive board members and volunteers who have been engaging transit workers like you about how we can win. Active members are the backbone of any great union, talking, building relationships, building the Union. Without our Core Team this could not have happened. It’s an everybody-in effort and it paid off. Not just for the people whose jobs are saved and their families, but for all of us to take a serious measure of our power when we stand together.


The National and International levels of our Union deserve recognition here, too. They supported our efforts with organizing, media support, video support, financial support. And moral support. Sometimes we just need somebody to say “Yes – you have it right. Keep going.”


City managers worked intensely with the Union over the past 3 weeks to pull it all together. Today the announcement went out and the job is done. A great collaborative effort!


So, let’s keep going. On to a great contract. To a great contract in Red Deer, at DATS, at St. Albert. On to having a say in Regionalization. On to continuing to build a great Union.

In Solidarity,
Steve Bradshaw
President/Business Agent
ATU Local 569