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TWU members launch strike at SEPTA

Yesterday, Transport Workers Union (TWU)-represented employees launched a strike at the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA). Recent negotiations between the parties — which were prompted by Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter and Rep. Bob Brady (D-Pa.) to avert a walkout — broke down over disagreements on wages, benefits and work rules.

A five-year contract covering 4,700 operators and mechanics in SEPTA’s City Transit Division, who are represented by TWU Local 234, expired on March 15.

Rendell expressed disappointment that negotiations broke off after he became directly involved in contract talks, including 14 hours of bargaining on Monday.

The governor urged union members to communicate with their leaders about whether they want to continue the work stoppage. Although there is no timetable set for resuming talks, SEPTA negotiators are “very anxious” to return to the bargaining table, according to the agency.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 11/4/2009