PHILADELPHIA, PA – SEPTA and TWU Local 234 have announced a tentative five-year contract that will bring 4,700-plus employees back to work and end a six-day strike that shut down the City Transit Division, CNN is reporting. Service will be phased-back in today on the Market-Frankford Line, Broad Street Line subway, city buses and trolleys, with full schedules restored by the start of the service day on Tuesday.
“We believe this agreement is fair to our employees, and to the fare-paying customers and taxpayers who fund SEPTA,” said SEPTA Board Chairman Pasquale T. Deon Sr. “It provides for wage increases, pension improvements, and maintains health care coverage levels while addressing rising costs.”
City Transit Division service has been shut down since the start of the TWU Local 234 strike at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 1.
“We know that the strike has caused a significant hardship for thousands of our riders. We sincerely regret this disruption to transportation throughout the City of Philadelphia and the region,” Deon said. “We thank riders for their patience under these extremely challenging circumstances. Negotiators on both sides worked tirelessly to get this agreement done, and we now look forward to the return of normal service.”
The tentative contract agreement will now go before TWU Local 234 members for a ratification vote, and to the SEPTA Board for approval.
“SEPTA would like to thank Gov. Wolf, his appointee to the SEPTA Board, Pa. Rep. Dwight Evans, Mayor Kenney, and other elected officials who played a role in keeping SEPTA and the union at the bargaining table,” Deon said. “We would also like to thank SEPTA employees for their hard work in very difficult circumstances, particularly the negotiating team that has been working around the clock to get this agreement done.”
Wolf released a statement Monday morning in response to the agreement reached by SEPTA and TWU. He said that he is pleased that the City of Philadelphia’s transit system will be fully operational within 24 hours.
“While I am beyond disappointed the situation ever resulted in a strike that affected the daily lives of hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvanians, I commend both sides bringing this crippling work stoppage to an end,” Wolf said. “I especially thank Rep. Dwight Evans for this tireless work to reach a resolution.
“The strike caused severe economic hardship because so many rely on transit service including the elderly and individuals with disabilities, as well as those who need transit to travel to work, school, and medical appointments. Now, these individuals can return to return to their normal daily commutes without the anxiety of disruption and the workers can return to their job and continue this important service for the people of Pennsylvania.”
SEPTA will provide status updates on the return of City Transit Division services online at http://www.septa.org, and on the Authority’s Twitter feeds. Customers can also call (215) 580-7800 to speak with a Customer Service Representative.