B.C.'s SkyTrain is back up and running after a ruling by the Labour Relations Board, but bus drivers are still off the job in Vancouver and Victoria.
The strike by public transit employees began on Sunday, forcing half a million Vancouver commuters to find alternative methods of getting to work.
- FROM APRIL 3, 2001: Vancouver copes with transit strike disruptions
The pickets had shut down a key part of the Vancouver transit system as pickets had kept non-striking SkyTrain workers off the job. The CUPE members who run the trains wouldn't cross the picket lines set up by striking security and office staffers.
The Labour Board has ruled the strikers can't shut down the stations that way.
"They have ruled that picketing is to be limited only to the ticket vending machines," said Ron Shewchuck, spokesman for B.C. Rapid Transit. "So that means we will be able to continue running SkyTrain and we'll be able to collect fares."
It's a ruling that has the union disappointed.
"We're asking the public to support the strike by not crossing our picket lines," said Jerri New, a spokesperson with the CAW, "and in fact asking the public not to pay the fares at those ticket vending machines."
The workers say since they usually collect the fares and check for tickets, there is no reason for passengers boarding the trains to bother paying.
The strike by more than 3,000 workers shows few signs it will be over soon. The two sides are about 10 percentage points apart in their wage positions and the union wants the company to stop hiring outside workers.
Negotiations are set to resume Wednesday morning.