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Utano, Samuelsen to MTA: We Choose to Fight

Today the TWU blasted the MTA for a doomsday 2021 budget that has extreme service and job cuts. Local 100 President Tony Utano said:

“The MTA's budget proposal is an outrageous and cowardly surrender to the Coronavirus, and a slap in the face of every transit worker. TWU Local 100, and the 40,000 transit workers who have risked life and limb to defeat the virus, reject this budget and demand the MTA withdraw it. Go back to the drawing board and come up with real solutions. Tossing thousands of workers onto the street and leaving entire neighborhoods without service are not answers.”

“Real solutions could include ending the stock transfer tax rebate, increasing the gasoline tax, getting rid of high-priced consultants and contractors, replacing cleaning contractors with in-house forces and offering retirement incentives.”

TWU International President John Samuelsen said: “The cuts disproportionately target New York City and in doing so they’re definitely going to disproportionately impact communities of color and essentially the working poor. The MTA has sat around waiting for a federal bailout instead of looking for additional sources of revenue. The TWU will not open up our contracts, we will not bankroll the MTA out of the deficit caused by COVID-19. We choose fightback, not surrender."

Applications for M3 Tech Union Scholarships Available Now

NOVEMBER 17 -- Applications are now available for the M3 Technology/TWU Local 100 Scholarships. Over $100,000 in scholarships ranging from $10,000 to $1,000 will be awarded in 2021. You can download the application here. This program, sponsored by M3 Technology, provides scholarships to TWU Local 100 members and retirees in good standing, and their spouses, children, or grand-children enrolled at accredited colleges. The application deadline is May 31, 2021. Scholarship winners from previous years are welcome to apply again. Winners will be drawn in a public lottery drawing.

The application is fillable, so please complete it on your computer. Then save it and send it along to the indicated address by mail. Questions? You can reach our scholarship administrator, Shannon Poland, at

Transit Workers Honored by Riders Allliance

A leading transit riders organization honored TWU Local 100 members Monday night for their heroic pandemic service with a special on-line tribute.

The Riders Alliance, which advocates for increased transit funding and system improvements, praised transit workers as a group for keeping New York City moving during this unprecedented crisis.

“We are here tonight to recognize their dedication, valor and sacrifice,” Riders Alliance Executive Director Betsy Plum said during the event. “As essential workers powered the pandemic response - health care workers, grocery store workers, pharmacy workers - it was the transit workers who were our unsung heroes - the heroes carrying heroes.”

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Union Wins Additional Accommodations for Pregnant Workers

NOVEMBER 9 -- Union efforts to secure light-duty jobs for pregnant Local 100 members have resulted in an important agreement with management initially covering women in the Train Operator and Conductor titles.

Train Operators and Conductors with pregnancy-related medical restrictions will now be able to apply for Restricted Duty Announcer positions, TWU Local 100 President Tony Utano announced Monday. These temporary assignments will be for up to 60 days at a time - but also can be extended for additional 30-day periods.

“This is a significant union victory,” Utano said. “Pregnant women for the first time will have an opportunity fora real light-duty option that doesn’t include standing on their feet all day or doing physical labor. The agreement is an important first step to finally provide our union sisters, regardless of title, the opportunity to continue to work in jobs that will not threaten their health or the health of their babies. We have a way to go still but we are all thrilled that we have made this pivotal agreement with the MTA.”

RTO Vice President Eric Loegel said: "This is a long time in the making, and a big step forward for the women of RTO. I'm thrilled we've prevailed in providing true light duty accommodations for our members."

There are ongoing discussions between union leaders and management on ways to expanding this new initiative to other departments and titles.

TWU Local 100 has been battling with the MTA over the lack of reasonable accommodations for pregnant women with medical issues for some time now. Last year, Local 100 filed several lawsuits against the authority. Those cases are active and ongoing. The union also pressed the issue in contract negotiations last year. The multi-year contract, which members ratified overwhelmingly in January, included a pledge from the MTA to participate in a joint labor-management committee and continue talking about potential job set asides for pregnant workers, particularly those in service- delivery roles, like Train Operator and Conductor.

“We are now seeing the fruits of those contract-mandated discussions," Utano said. "We promised that contract language would lead to positive change, and that positive change is taking place."

The MTA has agreed to have four pregnant women in the specified RTO titles – at any one time – filling these Restricted Duty Announcer positions. Over the course of a year, that could mean dozens of women will benefit as members give birth and shift to maternity leave. To be eligible for the posts, workers have to be designated “restricted duty” by the Medical Assessment Center based on supporting documentation from their treating physician or physicians.

Local 100 Congratulates Joe Biden and Kamala Harris

Local 100 President Tony Utano issued the following statement on the election of the Biden-Harris team to lead America for the next four years.

"TWU Local 100 congratulates President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President elect Kamala Harris on their historic victory. We now look to the Biden-Harris administration to follow through on their stated commitment to support and strengthen unions in America. We also look to the Biden-Harris administration to invest in mass transit, enact policies addressing climate change, and fund – on an unprecedented level ­– job-creating infrastructure projects.

"All of this will take cooperation between Democrats and Republicans, and we hope the elected leaders of both parties genuinely look to find common ground and avoid the gridlock that too often stalls progress in Washington, D.C.

"Finally, Local 100 would like to recognize the milestones that have been reached. Voting records were smashed. And Senator Harris, who is of Indian and Jamaican heritage, will be the first woman, and the first woman of color, to become Vice President. We wish them well. Our Democracy is strong."

MTA Issues New COVID-19 Return to Duty and Travel Directives

NOVEMBER 5 -- the MTA has issued new directives for return to duty protocols and travel directives. You can read them here.

MTA Expands COVID Testing Sites

Your union told the MTA that the number of subway locations for COVID-19 testing and screening was insufficient. The authority has agreed to add several new sites to the schedule, including: the Stillwell Ave. complex in Brooklyn, the Wakefield station at the northern end of the No. 2 Line (East 241st St. & White Plains Rd) in the Bronx, the Rail Control Center in Manhattan, and 130 Livingston St., Brooklyn. 
Testing will also take place at one of the Church Ave. subway stations on a line the MTA has not yet designated.
The MTA's current schedule for November can be found through the MTA employe portal and this link.
Getting the MTA to test and screen thousands of Local 100 members a week for COVID-19 was a top priority for TWU Local 100. Experts agree this will help identify and quarantine members who are sick but not showing symptoms, and help defend against the infectious virus. Take advantage of this program. Get Tested! 
Don't wait. If testing is not currently scheduled at your work location in the very near future, go to one of the 52 Northwell Health-GoHealth Urgent Care centers in the region. They are open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. weekdays, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekends. For more information, visit:


Stations Mourns S/A Ghayasuddin Patel, Lost to COVID-19

The Stations Department is mourning the loss of Station Agent Ghayasuddin Patel to COVID-19.

A veteran transit worker with 15 years of service, Agent Patel is survived by his wife and an adult son. He worked nights at the 18th Ave. station on the F Line in Borough Park, Brooklyn.

“The entire department is saddened,” Vice President Robert Kelley said. “We lost another good union brother to this virus. Our hearts are heavy. He will be missed by many.” Division Vice Chair Saim Montakim said Agent Patel was always willing to lend a hand or give advice to his fellow union members. "He was a very gentle, polite man,” Montakim said. “He was very good to his co-workers.”

New: Union Flyers on COVID-19 to Download and Distribute - Just click to download

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RTO Mourns the Loss of Conductor Donald Duvert, 39

The Union is mourning the untimely death of Conductor Donald Duvert, 39. On Saturday, October 24th, Conductor Duvert was working at Euclid Ave. on the “C” line when he fell ill and passed away. He was rushed to Brookdale Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

His sister, Marcy, remembers him to us: Born in Brooklyn, Brother Duvert resided in Valley Stream, NY. He joined the Transit Authority as a Conductor in 2018, and was assigned to Subdivision “B”. He loved his dog “Chichi”, and enjoyed life to the fullest. He loved boxing, basketball, nice cars and most importantly his family. Brother Duvert is survived by four siblings Dabir, Marc, Marcy, Chrishell, four nieces - Eboni, Elicia, Kayla, Khloe, and his parents, Pierre Duvert and Emmanuella Antoine. He will be truly missed.

RTO Vice President Eric Loegel expressed his condolences: "This is another sad and tragic loss for the Department and the Union. We send our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Brother Duvert, and wish them peace and comfort during this extremely difficult time."

President Tony Utano also expressed his condolences to the family of this young Union Brother.

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