The 2005 New York City Transit Strike

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2005 New York City transit strike

The 2005 New York City transit strike was a strike in New York City called by the Transport Workers Union Local 100 (TWU). Negotiations for a new contract with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) broke down over retirement, pension, and wage increases. The strike began at 3:00 a.m. EST on December 20, 2005. Most New York City Transit Authority personnel observed the strike, effectively halting all service on the subway and buses. Millions of commuters were affected. The strike officially ended at 2:35 p.m. EST on December 22, 2005. Service was restored overnight, with all transportation systems fully operational by the morning commute of the 23rd. On Tuesday, December 27, 2005 the executive board of Local 100 of the TWU accepted a 37 month contract offer from the MTA. The 37 month length was crucial as the last contract ended on December 15, causing disruption of the New York City economy just in the middle of the holiday season. Now the next contract would expire in mid January. The TWU demanded that all members of the union receive a 6% salary increase per year for each of the 3 years of the contract, plus more expensive accommodations for maternity leave, and more money to spend on station maintenance. The MTA offered a 3% raise the first year, a 4% raise the second year, and a 3.5% raise the third year. The striking workers reportedly earn an average of about US$48,000 annually. The TWU also wanted to lower the age of retirement (at which point the employee is eligible for a full pension) from 55 to 50. The MTA had wanted to raise the retirement age for newer workers from 55 to 62, but dropped this demand in exchange for pension contributions from new workers of 6% of gross salary per year for the first 10 years of employment. Under the previous contract, workers contribute 2% to their pension plan. At a news conference the morning of December 22, 2005, it was announced that the state mediator, Richard...
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