Declaring OC Transpo an essential service would result in protracted labour disruptions and higher wage costs, a city staff report stated.
The report will be discussed at the Corporate Services and Economic Development Committee on Tuesday. It states it‚s likely the city would need to seek special legislation to declare OC Transpo an essential service, rather than reach a mutual agreement with the Amalgamated Transit Union.
But a report from the C.D. Howe Institute entitled „No Free Ride: The Cost of Essential Services Designation,” stated the designation does not predict or prohibit future transit labour disruptions.
Since 1977, there have been approximately 671 strikes in Canada where an essential services designation was applied. Those strikes lasted 38 per cent longer than in similar locations and sectors where there was no designation.
Costs will also go up. Based on the preliminary analysis performed by the C.D. Howe Institute, the future cost of ATU settlements would likely increase if OC Transpo were deemed an essential service.