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Local 100 Honors the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

JANUARY 18, 2021 – Martin Luther King, Jr. was born January 15, 1929 in Atlanta, Georgia to Reverend Martin Luther King, Sr. and Alberta Williams King. He became the most celebrated civil rights leader of the 20th Century. Today, on the national holiday established to commemorate his life and work, we remember Dr. King with these quotes:
 
"If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward." 
 
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." 
 
"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." 
 
"The time is always right to do what is right." 
 
"In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends."
 
We are proud of the TWU's history of financial and organizational support for Dr. King and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. He was warmly welcomed to our International Convention in 1961 by our Founder, Mike Quill.
 
You can read Dr. King's address to the TWU here.
 
Fraternally,
Tony Utano, President
TWU Local 100 

 

 

Utano Urges Greater Police Presence on Buses, Subways: NYPD Says More Transit Cops Are on the Way

JANUARY 14 -- TWU Local 100 President Tony Utano met Thursday afternoon with high-ranking Police Department chiefs to discuss the plague of assaults impacting Local 100 members in the subway and bus systems. Utano stressed the importance of an increased, more visible police presence to both deter crime and provide quicker responses in emergencies.

“My members come to work to do a job, and they are going home with blood on their shirts,” Utano said. “These attacks are happening more and more, and they are getting worse.” The meeting included Chief of Department Terence Monahan, the second highest-ranking officer under NYPD Commissioner Dermot O’Shea; Chief of Patrol Juanita Holmes; and Transit Bureau Chief Kathleen O’Reilly, who is in charge of subway policing.

In a bit of good news, Transit Bureau Chief O’Reilly said she expects the size of her division to grow in the near future. There are two classes of recruits in the NYPD Academy, and O’Reilly has been assured a “significant number” will be assigned to the Transit Bureau, she said. Chief of Patrol Juanita Holmes said precinct officers conducted 30,000 bus inspections last year. She said she would welcome union input on which routes and locations are the most problematic. Also attending the meeting were Assistant Transit Bureau Chief Vincent Coogan and Inspector Steven D’Ulisse, commanding officer of the police Public Information office. Police brass agreed to additional meetings with union leadership to exchange ideas and information regarding safety initiatives and operations.

 

Union Members, Including Track Equip Maintainer and Car Inspector Deployed to DC with National Guard

TWU Local 100 members are heroes moving heroes in NYC – and citizen soldiers on the front lines of Democracy in Washington, D.C. Transit workers like Track Equipment Maintainer Ricky Tyson Jr. and Car Inspector Fritzner Neptune also are in the National Guard and have been deployed the capital for the inauguration of President-elect Joseph Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris.

With last week’s storming of the Capitol Building, and the potential for more insurrectionist violence, it’s an inauguration week unlike any other in modern history. “This is very different,” Sgt. Tyson, who was deployed for President Obama’s inauguration in 2009, said. “Last time we were pretty much doing traffic duty. Now, everyone is armed up. Since the insurgency, it’s pretty crazy.”

Tyson, 44, and Neptune, 36 are both sergeants in the 107th Military Police Company out of Fort Hamilton, Brooklyn. Tyson is transporting soldiers to and from their posts. Neptune is working a security detail.
“I’m doing my duty,” Tyson said. “Everyone I work with has an important role.” Tyson has an extensive military background. He served four years in the U.S. Army, two years in the Army Reserves and has been in the National Guard for approximately 13 years. He completed two tours in Iraq. Neptune, who emigrated from Haiti, has been in the National Guard for seven years.

This is his first deployment for a presidential inauguration but like Tyson he’s been deployed multiple times to emergencies, including the aftermath of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico in September 2017 and the subway pipe bombing in Manhattan in December of that year. “Wherever they need us, we are there,” Neptune said.

Union Case to Block Elimination of Lunch Reliefs Under Final Court Review

FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2021 – TWU’s lawsuit to block the MTA’s planned elimination of 185 lunch relief jobs is now in the hands of NYS Supreme Court Judge Franc Perry. Judge Perry heard day-long testimony and cross examination from several witnesses for the union, including Vice President Robert Kelley, and one witness for the MTA, David Santoro, Chief Officer for Stations Environment and Operations at NYCT.

Union attorney Arthur Schwartz clearly established that the lunch relief function has been eliminated, and as a result, a total of 185 lunch relief jobs disappeared from the winter 2021 pick, which is set to go into effect on Jan. 31, 2021.  He also demonstrated through testimony by Vice President Kelley that closure of hundreds of station booths for 90 minutes every day is more than an “inconvenience” as intimated by the MTA, but a burden on the handicapped community and a potential life-threatening danger to riders in the event of an emergency requiring power to be shut off to the third rail, or the intervention of Police, Fire or EMS.

The Authority held to its position that the MTA was being forced to re-allocate its Stations manpower in the face of a Covid-induced hiring freeze, and that that allows them to get around the law. Schwartz, in his closing remarks, restated that the MTA’s unilateral action is a clear violation of the Public Authorities Law that requires a 45-day notice and public hearings before such a change is implemented.  The MTA countered that the law did not apply in this case because no one had actually lost their job.

Judge Perry adjourned the meeting at approximately 4:00pm and promised a judicious review of the case, and a prompt ruling. His ruling will occur before the January 31st start date of the new Stations pick.
We will keep you advised of any new information in this important case.

 

Time to Apply for the Michael J. Quill Scholarships

The union has been honoring our founder with these scholarships since 1969. Quill Scholarship awards have benefited hundreds of TWU families. Children of our members in transit, railroad and air transportation, utilities, public employment, space installations, and allied industries are among those who began their college educations with the help of the TWU’s signature scholarship.

Applications are now being accepted for the 2021 Michael J. Quill Scholarship Fund. This scholarship will offer fifteen (15) college-bound dependents of TWU members a scholarship worth $4,800.00. This scholarship will be paid out, each year in the amount of $1,200.00 to winners who continue to be eligible over their four (4) year course. The deadline for applications is April 26, so apply soon.

TWU Mourns Helen O’Connor, Retired Member of the Union Staff

TWU Local 100 is mourning the passing of a beloved member of the union staff, Helen Lynch O’Connor, who worked in the union’s Accounting Department for nearly 35 years until her retirement in 2000. She was 90 and passed away peacefully at her home in the Woodlawn section of the Bronx on Jan. 9, 2021.

Helen was a first cousin, once removed, of TWU Founder Michael J. Quill, whose mother was a Lynch. She was born in Tralee, County Kerry, Ireland and came to New York in 1963.

Helen was married to the late Michael O’Connor, a MaBSTOA Bus Operator. Her brother Patrick Lynch was a TAS Surface Bus Operator and manager.

Local 100 President Tony Utano said: “Helen was a lovely woman, always smiling; the kind of person who lifted your spirits every day you saw her. Her co-workers loved her dearly. She brought a lot of joy to TWU during her time with us. She also had such a strong connection to the people who founded our union. My heart goes out to her family.”

Helen is survived by sons, Michael and Donal, brothers Jack and Patrick, and three grandchildren.

Arrangements are as follows:

Viewing
9:00 am - 10:30 am
Thursday, January 14, 2021
Hodder Farenga Funeral Home
899 McLean Ave
Yonkers, New York, United States

Funeral Mass
Thursday, January 14th
10:45am, St. Barnabas Church 409 E. 241St Street Bronx, NY 10470

Link to live feed: https://www.facebook.com/stbarnabascatholicchurch/live_videos/

Vaccines for Transit Workers Are Here

MONDAY, JANUARY 11 -- Local 100 members are now eligible for vaccines against COVID-19. Local 100 insisted that transit workers be given priority status -- and we were. Your union leadership urges you to get vaccinated to protect yourself, your family, your co-workers and your community. Together, we can stop the spread. Click here for the MTA's memo on vaccination opportunities and plans.

Pres. Utano Calls for More Police Presence in the Transit System

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JANUARY 6 -- CBS 2 News reports on recent assaults against our members, and the call by President Tony Utano to add more police presence to the transit system. Bus and Subway workers have been assaulted nearly 900 timnes between August and Mid-December. In a letter to Police Commissioner Dermot Shea, Utano said that transit workers don't feel protected on the job. "They call us heroes," he said. "Well, protect your heroes!" A meeting will be held soon. Click on the image above or see the news report by clicking here.

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