Tags: bill de blasio | transit union | safety initiative | ad

Transit Union Posts Full-Page Ad Protesting de Blasio's Plan

By    |   Wednesday, 27 May 2015 03:04 PM

New York transit union leaders began a campaign in protest of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's "Vision Zero" traffic plan, bringing into question the mayor's progressive ideology.

Transport Workers Local 100 has a full-page ad in Wednesday's New York Daily News with a message for the mayor: "Uncuff'em, Mayor DeBlasio!" the headline reads.

The union says in a statement that de Blasio's safety rules have led to six bus drivers being unfairly arrested because of their involvement in accidents with pedestrians since the debut of the "Vision Zero" safety initiative. It has since filed a lawsuit challenging the initiative in New York State's Supreme Court.

"As the City Council debates to decriminalize public urination and fare beating on our subways and buses — despite the fact that fare disputes lead to assaults on our Bus Operators — your Vision Zero campaign criminalizes the working men and women Bus Operators of TWU Local 100 for simply doing what NYC and the MTA order them to do everyday," the ad says. "So now public urination and fare beating are no big thing, but Bus Operators are criminals? Not very 'progressive of you, Mayor DeBlasio."

"MTA Bus Operators, and all transit workers, are pillars of NYC’s minority and blue-collar neighborhoods," the union ad continues. "They do their jobs driving buses with multiple blind spots, on routes requiring dangerous left turns with no dedicated left turn signals."

"And when a tragic right-of-way accident occurs, through no negligence by a Bus Operator, you and the so-called progressives on the City Council think it is necessary to arrest and humiliate them?" the union asks.

"This could not possibly have been the intent of the Vision Zero right-of-way law."

De Blasio told the local New York CBS affiliate that the union is "absolutely misleading, and I think they should really think twice before they continue to spread this misinformation."

The "Vision Zero" law makes it a misdemeanor for drivers who fail to yield and hit pedestrians or those riding bicycles who cross with the light.

TWU 100 President John Samuelson wants bus drivers exempt from the law, telling CBS that the drivers are being "criminalized for doing exactly what the city and the MTA ordered them to do, which is operate buses with blind spots."

But de Blasio says that public employees shouldn't be treated any differently than private citizens.

"If the officer at the scene determines that it was an avoidable accident and it would merit arrest for a civilian, there would be an arrest even for a public employee," de Blasio told the news affiliate.

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New York transit union leaders began a campaign in protest of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's "Vision Zero" traffic plan, bringing into question the mayor's progressive ideology.
bill de blasio, transit union, safety initiative, ad
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2015-04-27
Wednesday, 27 May 2015 03:04 PM
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