Published 16 Nov, 2012
TWU welcomes its newest members the bus drivers and monitors of Durham School Services in Burleson and Weatherford, Texas as they overwhelmingly voted to join TWU for a voice on the job.
“TWU will go to bat for us and help us with our workers’ rights,” said Jay Gunter a bus driver for Durham for the past eight years.
The vote, which took place after months of organizing and dedication as well as years of unfair treatment from Durham.
“They can now be held accountable on how we are treated improving our workplace,” said Dena Hooley, a bus driver for five years.
The workers encountered numerous issues at the workplace, such as how management spoke to them, favoritism on who was allowed to drive routes and who could be fired, as Texas is a right to work state.
Another major issue the drivers faced was their concern of bus maintenance in regards to safety. The drivers had been reporting issues with some of the buses and saw very little to no response from Durham.
Collectively, they knew unionizing was going to provide them with a strengthened voice inevitably making their jobs and Durham better. But that did not come with out other obstacles.
They also overcame and countered a very large anti union campaign from Durham who pulled information from other organizations to discourage workers from unionizing, such as misleading people about how much dues were.
“It was uncomfortable,” said Hooley about coming to work facing the anti union messages. “ But we maintained our civility and a better future.”
This is the second set of Durham School Services for TWU in Texas, the first being in Weatherford this past May.