Back in December 2007 I made a post on this blog about the TTC hiring Behavioral Science Technology to reduce absentee costs at the transit commission. Over the past few days excerpts of the report have appeared in local newspapers.
Comments from members of focus groups made up of employees from the TTC's bus division:
- "I had a problem with school kids and asked for help. The superintendent had a supervisor drive behind the bus the next day."
- "If you drive as you are trained, you would always be late and would not make it past probation."
- "There is pressure everyday to have buses leave the property whether or not they are repaired."
- "Management never compensates us for extra time. We are not able to go home on time, and this adds stress and pressure."
- "I called and told the supervisor that I was nervous about a passenger on my bus. The supervisor stayed on the line until the passenger got off."
- "Supervisors will try to coerce operators to keep driving when buses have mechanical problems like the horn not working or the air gage not working."
- "Supervisors say, 'We are not paying you to think.'"
- "Supervisors say things like, 'Let me speak slowly to you, so you will understand.'"
- "I had no bus and started my route 22 minutes late. When I asked for a short turn to finish on time, the supervisor said he was not here to accommodate drivers."
- "I was forced to drive a bus without headlights and with the roof hatch open. I called, but since I had only six months on the job I was told to keep going."
- "I helped a lady load groceries on the bus. I fell and reported the injury to CIS. They did not ask about me. They asked about how late are you."
I looks like after 11 years of retirement from the TTC my comment still stands… “difficult to convince management that something was not safe.”
Durham Region Transit does not have the same problems. There are no negative or hostile state of mind towards employees. In my experience Pickering Transit, Ajax Pickering Transit and DRT were vast improvements over the poisoned work environment at the TTC.