TORONTO, Ont. — DriveTest employees yesterday rejected the company’s latest offer by 78%, but now management says it will step in and begin road testing commercial drivers.
According to a report in the Toronto Star, DriveTest managers will begin road testing commercial drivers at a few locations as early as Friday. Only commercial drivers will be accepted for road tests, the Star reports. It’s estimated as many as 300,000 drivers in Ontario are awaiting tests.
In the same report, USW Local 9511 president Jim Young, said the union would take action to block drivers from crossing picket lines.
The DriveTest strike is nearing 12 weeks now and it appears relations between the company and its unionized workers are deteriorating – if that’s possible.
On its Web site, the union posted that “There was an increase in the total number of ballots received from our Membership for this second ‘FINAL OFFER’ the Employer presented. The 78% represents an increase of 4% above the Employer’s original ‘FINAL OFFER’ vote…See you on the picket lines and remember we will last one day longer than the Employer.”
Even if management begins road testing commercial drivers, many new drivers will require retraining before they’re ready to take the test, Kim Richardson, president of KRTS Transportation Specialists recently told Trucknews.com.
“We have an obligation to make sure they’re ready not only to pass the road test, but also to be ready for the industry,” he said. “It’s a substantial investment for KRTS to ensure they’re trained to the standards (industry) is used to.”
Many driver training schools have laid off instructors and several truck training institutes recently converged at Queen’s Park to urge the province into action.
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