Arizona IBT 104 Union could strike if Sun Tran talks fail "driver safety is among the issues being negotiated"

Arizona IBT 104 Union could strike if Sun Tran talks fail "driver safety is among the issues being negotiated"

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Dean Knuth / Arizona Daily Star 2010
A Teamsters official says driver safety is among the issues being negotiated with Professional Transit Management.
By Patrick McNamara0

Sun Tran will post up-to date information on its website at and on the company’s social media pages.

Information is available by calling the Sun Tran customer service center at 792-9222.

Information also will be posted at Sun Tran transit centers.

Union officials representing Sun Tran workers have been in last-minute contract negotiations with the company that operates the bus system for the city in an attempt to avoid a strike.

Professional Transit Management of Tucson and Teamsters Local 104 planned to continue talks through Friday to try to come to an agreement. The contract expires at 11:59 p.m. Friday.

Teamsters members voted last weekend to strike if a new contract cannot be negotiated.

Andy Marshall, secretary-treasurer of Local 104, said the union agreed not to share specifics of the negotiations with the public.

Marshall did say the issues on the table were not only economic — worker safety has been discussed during the negotiations.

In November, a man stabbed a Sun Tran driver who was on break at the Roy Laos Transit Center on West Irvington Road near South Sixth Avenue.

The driver was stabbed multiple times but received non-life threatening injuries.

Joshua Lee Duarte, then 18, was charged with felony and misdemeanor assault. A trial date was been scheduled for December.

In January, another bus driver was assaulted by a passenger who threw a cup of soda at him after being told to leave the bus.

Last-minute negotiations staved off a strike last August.

Sun Tran workers have gone on strike twice over the last 18 years. Union workers stopped work in 1997 and again in 2001.

The 2001 strike lasted 12 days. A federal mediator was brought in to negotiate the settlement.