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Transit Windsor users urged to come up with 'plan B' as strike deadline looms


The clock is ticking on a possible Transit Windsor Strike. As the deadline for a deal fast approaches, people who rely on the service are scrambling to figure out how to get around.

Jeannie White is trying to get a jump on any potential job action, completing her to-do list ahead of time.

“I'm doing all my shopping now and then [I will] walk later on if [there is a] strike on Monday,” White said.

White — like many others who rely on transit for school, work, appointments and leisure travel — are worried about how to get around Monday if the Amalgamated Transit Union and City of Windsor can’t reach a deal.

Talks are ongoing but a deal has yet to be reached, with a strike deadline of 12:01 Monday morning.

“In the event that they're not running, I will bike, I will walk, I will hitchhike. I'll fly if I had wings,” said Madiha Khan, a transit user.

Billy Arbeau uses transit to get around and thinks this may be a chance to hunker down.

“Being stuck at home, because I use the buses to go everywhere,” he said.

Jaspreet Singh is an international student at St. Clair College and doesn’t own a car.

“The only mode of transportation we have is these buses and now if they will go on strike, I don't know,” he said. “I will come to classes and I don't have enough, you know, resources to book a cab everyday. So yeah, it's a point of concern.”

To offset costs, St. Clair College is providing students who have a valid Transit Windsor bus pass with a $275 credit on their student account.

Classes will continue as scheduled and the college suggests students and staff pack their patience as traffic volumes will no doubt increase at pick-up and drop-off points.

At the University of Windsor, classes are also scheduled to continue as planned, with students encouraged to find alternative transportation, including ridesharing.

Meantime, Vets Cab and other taxi services in the region are ready for an influx of passengers.

“Plan B can be a taxi or an Uber, but if you're going for a 40 minute drive that becomes cost prohibitive,” said County Warden and Leamington Mayor Hilda MacDonald.

She wants county residents who use the Leamington line to be ready for the possibility of a strike and suggests transit users make alternate arrangements such as carpooling.

“It's well known as a route for students as well as folks that work in in the city and vice versa,” she said.

As the waiting game reaches the 11th hour, transit users hope for either no disruption, or a speedy resolution to the labour dispute.

“What are you going to do? They [have to] settle,” said White.

“I guess I’ll be walking,” added Arbeau.

Khan has some sage advice for people who choose to walk instead.

“You need some comfy sneakers, invest in good shoes,” Khan said. “They're worth it.” Top Stories

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