WASHINGTON – Greg Regan, President of the Transportation Trades Department of the AFL-CIO, issued this statement in response to the NYC Department of Transportation’s (NYCDOT) Staten Island Ferry service disruptions:
“The totality of transportation labor is outraged by the NYCDOT’s decision to significantly reduce rush hour ferry service to the detriment of thousands of New Yorkers who rely on this essential public transportation service and are, in many cases, effectively stranded without it.
“For years, the Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association (MEBA), the union representing SI Ferry captains, assistant captains, mates, chief engineers and marine engineers, has sounded the alarm about the NYCDOT’s inability to attract and retain workers given the irrefutable but sad fact that the workforce has been without a contract for 12 years and is still earning paltry 2010 wages and benefits. Meanwhile, safety and service reliability have steadily degraded due to the NYCDOT’s astounding managerial incompetence.
“The NYCDOT must come to the table to offer a new contract; it is the only immediate path forward to address the safety concerns and steady service erosion. These workers have waited for years. They should not have to wait one more day.”