The Union representing Regina Transit drivers says they are happy to see that the city will be installing safety barriers on all its buses.
President of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 588, Kevin Lucier says these barriers will go a long way to ensuring drivers are protected from a variety of issues, including COVID-19.
“Obviously, a lot of safety concerns are alleviated by the time we get these installed,” said Lucier. “There’s always concerns of violence, harassment, and assaults that go on out there. This definitely addresses that issue as well.”
After council approved the barriers, Lucier says there was a huge weight lifted off the mind of transit drivers.
“Very much a sense of relief in that they can come to work and feel safe,” said Lucier. “And a second sense of relief that they seem to have some support amongst council.”
Lucier says it’s nice to finally see the barriers get approved, adding it’s something the ATU has been advocating for a long time.
“This has been a very long time coming, I’ve actually heard from previous (ATU) president over the last couple of days,” said Lucier. “This is going back a few administrations within our Union that they’ve been fighting for this. This goes back to the ‘90s when this first came up.”
Lucier says the barriers will allow drivers to do their jobs safely, while still having the capability to engage with riders.
The city is planning on having the barriers installed on every bus by the end of the year.