D.C. Circulator bus drivers officially ended a three-day strike Thursday by approving a new agreement with managing company RATP Dev.
The Amalgamated Transit Union Local 689, the bargaining agent for the Circulator drivers, said its members “overwhelmingly” approved the agreement after two months of negotiations with RATP Dev, WTOP reported.
The new agreement includes health care improvements, better retirement benefits, and wage increases, including an immediate 25% boost in starting pay to help deal with an ongoing driver shortage.
“This strike showed the power of workers fighting for our rights,” said ATU Local President Raymond Jackson in a news release, WTOP reported. “Local 689 DC Circulators members did what we do best and won. Transit agencies across the country are now on notice. Public transit contractors cannot continue to make cuts on the backs of workers and riders. I’m proud of our members for standing strong and standing together.”
Circulator service in all routes resumed Friday.
The drivers started picketing Tuesday because the company and the union could not agree on wages and benefits. The union had said for months that RATP Dev has negotiated in bad faith and threatened to substitute union members with subcontractors, eliminating workers’ federal rights under family and medical leave provisions and undercutting progressive discipline, among other issues.