A province-wide scarcity of faculty bus drivers is now being felt right here within the Limestone metropolis.
The reason for the scarcity is claimed to be COVID-19 testing and necessary vaccination insurance policies.
“Within the current two weeks, that’s once we’ve seen extra drivers, extra screens leaving the enterprise due to their determination to not be examined or to be vaccinated,” says Gord Taylor, the CEO of Tri-Board Pupil Transportation Companies, which employs roughly 700 folks.
Taylor says the scarcity is impacting households each day.
“Each day now, we’re seeing one or possibly two bus cancellations as a result of a scarcity. So the proportion may be very low, however nonetheless one thing we’re not accustomed to, and definitely an inconvenience for households when these buses don’t function,” defined Taylor.
The nationwide college bus firm, Inventory Transportation, which additionally operates in Kingston, revealed in an announcement that also they are experiencing a college bus driver scarcity.
“This present scarcity of bus drivers is essentially the most vital we’ve ever skilled. We’re at the moment quick six drivers and have over 125 drivers in place to service our routes in Kingston. The overwhelming majority of our drivers have been vaccinated, and people who haven’t been vaccinated are required to finish COVID screening exams twice every week,” stated Ed Flavin, the communications supervisor for Inventory Transportation.
Taylor says the workers at Tri-Board Pupil Transportation Companies have a excessive vaccination charge, and the choice to make vaccinations and COVID-19 testing necessary for drivers is the rationale they’re seeing issues with retention.
“Whereas we’re actually pleased with the 90 per cent vaccination charge of our college bus neighborhood, among the many 10 per cent who aren’t vaccinated and who’re required to check, a few of them are reluctant to do this testing, so we’ve misplaced a slender margin of drivers amongst that 10 per cent.”
Taylor says regardless of this, staffing points in Kingston are stated to be far much less extreme than in different cities within the province, and the corporate is working exhausting to handle this subject so college students can preserve their reliable transportation each day.
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