Gatineau bus drivers' union says STO suspended vice-president for 3 days

The union that oversees Gatineau bus drivers and maintenance employees is fuming after it says the Société de transport de l'Outaouais (STO) suspended its vice-president for three days without pay.

The union — the Syndicat uni du transport (SUT) — said Guy Gosselin received a letter on Friday reproaching him, in French,  for "unacceptable" behaviour that "cannot be tolerated."  The letter says he had already been warned  back in December.

Union president Félix Gendron said the suspension was likely linked to an event that took place in early January.

"In early January, I had a final meeting with the employer, and employees had gone up to support me. The vice-president was there as well. They all had letters and the vice-president had another letter giving him three days' suspension, " Gendron told Radio-Canada.

He said 20 people received disciplinary letters. 

"We see very clearly that the transportation company wants to attack the union," he said.

When reached Saturday, the STO said it could neither confirm nor deny the suspension.

The union and the transit agency have been at odds over protracted contract negotiations. Last week, the mediator recommended they go to arbitration, but the two sides disagreed over how that arbitration would be executed.

A meeting between the two sides and a mediator is scheduled for Wednesday.