Almost 80 TTC employees have now tested positive for coronavirus

Sep 15 2020, 9:00 am

A total of 77 TTC employees have now tested positive for COVID-19, with 37 staff in isolation, the transit commission confirms.

According to the transit union, ATU Local 113, one of the cases was a bus operator at Arrow Road division who last worked on September 9 and received their positive diagnosis on September 14.

Another was a trainee at Greenwood Carhouse and they received a positive test result on September 7.

And the TTC said the third recent case is a transportation supervisor at Malvern.

According to the transit commission, once they are notified of a positive diagnosis, they “immediately” engage with Toronto Public Health to investigate and decide on the next steps, including notifying those who may need to take additional action.

“At every location, we take action to ensure enhanced cleaning measures as recommended by public health officials, such as additional surface cleaning in frequently accessed areas, are undertaken as soon as possible,” the TTC said.

As there is community spread of coronavirus in the city, Toronto Public Health is asking all individuals who have symptoms to self-isolate at home for 14 days from when the symptoms begin and to call Telehealth Ontario, their local public health department, or healthcare provider, and for TTC employees to call the transit system’s Occupational Health and Safety Department.

To date, of the 77 employees to test positive for the virus, 68 employees have recovered and returned to work.

With more people returning to work, the transit union — which represents 12,000 workers — held a rally over the weekend to restore full service to the TTC to avoid overcrowding.

“We’re continuing our calls for the TTC to restore full service and bring back all our laid off workers immediately. The Ontario government must provide transit with permanent funding to prevent overcrowding in the long term,” said ATU Local 113 President Carlos Santos.

On September 11, the TTC deployed 110 additional buses to manage anticipated service demand this month as students head back to school and more people return to work offices.

There is also increased demand for more physical distancing as COVID-19 cases are on the rise in Toronto with 264 reported over the weekend and 71 reported on Tuesday.

And since July 2, it became mandatory for transit riders to wear a face mask or covering on all TTC vehicles.

Clarrie FeinsteinClarrie Feinstein

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