SEPTA hints at getting court order to end transit strike

The city’s transit strike continued to cause a transportation nightmare Wednesday and SEPTA management suggested they might go to court to end the walk-out.

Members of Transit Workers Union Local 234 on strike for a better contract from SEPTA already proved they’re deadly serious by blocking Regional Rail employees from getting to work and causing massive delays for commuters on Tuesday night.

As of press-time Wednesday, the standoff was continuing, as SEPTA and Local 234 were said to be continuing negotiations over a newcontract.

SEPTA said it may need to seek a court order to compel workers to end the strike on Election Day next week.

“If we foresee an agreement will not come to pass, SEPTA intends to seek to enjoin the strike for November 8th to ensure that the strike does not prevent any voters from getting to the polls and exercising their right to vote,” SEPTA said in a statement.

Union officials released a statement apologizing to passengers inconvenienced by the strike.

“We regret the inconvenience to passengers caused when SEPTA forced a strike. That’s why we reported our unanimous strike vote on October 16, and stated consistently that there would be a strike if no new agreement was reached by midnight on October 31,” read the statement. “We never said that a settlement was close, because it wasn’t. If SEPTA representatives said otherwise in the days leading up the strike, they were misleading the public. Unfortunately, this has made it more difficult for commuters to make alternative travel plans.”

The union claims that SEPTA is offering members a pay raise at the same time as they ask for a hike in health care premiums, which would ultimately cut their take-home pay.

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