On Wednesday evening three members of the Vineyard Transportation Authority advisory board, June Manning of Aquinnah, Elaine Miller of Tisbury, and Carlton Crocker, representing riders, voted to end the drivers’ strike by directing management to enter into binding arbitration with Amalgamated Transit Union. Chairman Alice Butler of Oak Bluffs, John Alley of West Tisbury and Lenny Jason of Chilmark voted against it, thereby prolonging the strike. Instead they voted for continuing, and fruitless, mediation, which will not result in a binding contract. Why are they resisting binding arbitration? Why has TCI management fought this union for five years? Mediation will not result in a binding contract. Management knows that; do Carter, Alley, and Jason? The community needs an explanation for their obstruction.

This looks like classic union busting to me, a practice abhorrent to a majority of Vineyard residents. Our drivers are dedicated to serving the community’s needs and are not asking for anything more than they deserve. Come on friends and neighbors, let’s not allow this shameful situation to continue any longer. Talk to your town selectmen if you are not happy with your representation and let’s get our drivers where they want to be, taking us where we want to go.

Mitzi Pratt