By Bonnie Morr
Alternate Vice President – Bus Department

Right now in our country, economics is spelling out what transit and transportation will look like now and in the future.

The UTU Bus Department has been following the trends for funding that are necessary for passenger and public transportation to meet the needs of an aging population and growing automobile congestion.

It does not look good. 

In every town and community, hard decisions must be made — and we want those decisions made by lawmakers who understand the importance of adeuate, reliable and safe public transportation, including transportation of school children by bus.
We have a responsibility to our families, children and community to make sure that the funding for public transportation stays in place. We can do that with our votes on Election Day, Nov. 2.

When we say, “vote your paycheck,” keep in mind that the jobs of UTU Bus Department members depend on adequate, reliable and safe funding for public transportation.

We need to get out the vote for labor-friendly candidates who support adequate, reliable and safe public transportation.

Think jobs, because there are candidates out there who are coming after our jobs.

When you cast your ballot on Election Day, support candidates who will do the right thing when it comes to funding and ensuring adequate, reliable and safe public transportation.

I am a laborer. I drive a bus. I want the labor protections that labor-friendly candidates will honor with laws and regulations that my mother fought for as an organizer for the Ladies Garment Workers Union.

We have protections as union bus operators, and we want to extend those protections to the unorganized.

Let us all support candidates who are pledged to increased funding for public transportation, job security, safe working conditions and an environment that respects working families.

To view the list of labor-friendly candidates, click on the following link:

By James Stem
UTU National Legislative Director

Alfred E. Newman, the not-very-bright Mad magazine character, had an expression shared today by too many Americans: “I am not sure who is running, and my vote won’t make a difference anyway.”

It is doubtful those harboring that opinion would give up their right to vote.

Our war for independence from Britain was about self-government. More recent struggles among women and minorities for the right to vote were equally hard fought.

Today, it is apathy among middle-class workers — not foreign troops, not intimidation at the polls, not laws — that threatens American democracy.

The wealthy and business leaders are more likely to vote than working families. By not going to the polls, working families put at risk their job security, workplace safety, paychecks, access to affordable health care and pensions.

If you are concerned that your work schedule or other conflict will hinder your ability to vote on Election Day, Nov. 2, most states allow you an option to vote early.

You can be sure that the wealthy and business leaders will vote — and vote for candidates who would undermine the financial security of working families.

Our ballot is equal to the ballot of every anti-labor business leader, but it is equal only if we vote.

I am asking you to pay attention to the economic well-being of your family and workplace safety. Ask your UTU local LR and UTU state legislative board for information on local, state and national candidates’ positions toward working families.

In the centerfold of the October issue of UTU News (which you should have received at your home) is a listing, by state, of labor-friendly candidates endorsed by the UTU. This listing is the result of months of research by state legislative boards, the UTU National Legislative Office and the AFL-CIO — based on interviews with the candidates and their responses to written questions.

The list of labor friendly candidates is also available by clicking the link at the end of this column.

Be proud of the middle class lifestyle your UTU contract supports, and consider voting for candidates who will put the interests of working families first.

If you have further questions, contact the UTU National Legislative Office via e-mail at, or call us at (202) 543-7714.

Don’t allow others to determine your future. Vote!

To view the list of labor-friendly candidates, click on the following link: