Fair Wages for School Bus Drivers
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What's the value of the safety and care of your children? To a school bus driver, the value of your child's safety is immeasurable.
Before ever leaving to pick up school children, each driver is required to perform a safety inspection of the bus, checking everything from mirrors to brakes to fluids. The average bus picks up approximately seventy children after all, (twice your average classroom and they have Education Assistants (EA's) to assist with special needs children). Learning basic maintenance and mechanics is important to our work.
Some children have special needs, poor health and may face bullying. The management of all these possible situations are the responsibility of the driver. Frequently, without the help of EA's or other staff, all issues regarding behaviour and health fall solely on our shoulders, making our first aid training invaluable, and our knowledge of Ontario laws necessary. Each of the problems that exist at school, still exist on the ride home. There are forms to be filled out if a child has a bloody nose and the Bill 157 specifically holds bus drivers responsible to report bullying incidents.
Each document required for health incidents, bullying and trauma are widely understood and used by bus drivers to legally protect your child and encourage adherence to rules and fairness. We are trained in defensive driving to ensure that your children are protected from those who don't effectively observe road rules regarding buses. After all, that car in a rush driving through our flashing lights probably doesn't care that it may be your child they are about to run over.
Your children are cared for on the way to and from school. Your children are safe. Your children are supported in social distress and medical emergency. Sometimes, we are the only friendly face they may see in a day. For all of that, a bus driver is paid minimum wage.
Is your child's well being not worth more than that? We think it's far greater than that.
Please join us in asking Patty Hajdu, the Minister of Workforce, Development and Labor, to ensure school bus drivers are paid a fair wage.
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