Safe, COVID-free Buses for Passengers & Drivers

Safe, COVID-free Buses for Passengers & Drivers

October 5, 2020
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Signatures: 224Next Goal: 500
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Why this petition matters

Started by Teamsters Local 848

For  months, the CDC has been telling us that masks help prevent the spread of Covid 19.  Now, ‘super-spreader’ events at the White House and beyond remind all of us that yes, masks are a good thing. The evidence is in. Masks save lives.

But even with more than 210,000 Americans dead from the pandemic, and another 7 million infected, Keolis Transit is failing in its responsibility to keep passengers and their employees safe. They’re allowing the public to ride on public transportation without a mask – and even fired a bus driver last month for refusing to allow a mask-less passenger to board.

Most transit agencies across the country require passengers to wear face masks. But not Keolis, which operates passenger buses around the country, including Foothill Transit in Los Angeles County. There it is directing its drivers to allow passengers without masks to board the bus, in violation of state mandates. Read their memo to drivers:

“This memorandum is to remind all of our employees that everybody in Los Angeles County must use a face covering when in public or around people from other households. However, the enforcement of this mandate is not the driver’s responsibility. Foothill Transit has directed both contractors that ‘we will not deny service to customers without a face covering’ or not wearing the face covering correctly.”

What’s wrong with Keolis? Passengers should be insisting that the company takes their safety seriously in the midst of this pandemic. Instead, Keolis is blaming the driver, firing her for not allowing a passenger to endanger others with his rash behavior. The driver, who just recovered from breast cancer surgery a few months ago, had complained about the company’s failure to outfit the buses with plastic partitions or to supply drivers with adequate PPE. Read her full story here:

All of us have reason to be nervous. Hundreds of transit workers across the country have already lost their lives to COVID-19. Thousands more have gotten sick from the deadly disease. That’s why virtually every state, including California, mandates the wearing of masks in public. No company should be allowed to operate in this reckless manner.

In the interest of public safety, we demand that:

1) Keolis immediately rescind its directive mandating that bus operators allow maskless passengers on board; and

2) reinstate driver Kessel Davis with full backpay.

Join us in sending this message to the CEO of Keolis and demand justice for the public, and for transit drivers.

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Signatures: 224Next Goal: 500
Support now

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