STM cutting 255 jobs: union

By The Canadian Press

The Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) local 2850 representing administrative, technical and support staff at the Société de transport de Montréal (STM) says the STM will be cutting 255 positions.

In a press release issued on Thursday, the union says that the cuts will mainly affect its members. “Non-unionized, unionized, administrative and professional jobs will be affected, in particular.”

In a statement to CityNews the STM did not confirm the number of positions being cut but said: “We are making every effort to optimize our spending. In fact, we have committed to generating savings of $100 million over five years, without affecting our service offering. A 5 per cent reduction in our payroll is one of the measures we are taking to achieve our goal. We are now finalizing the 2024 budget, following last week’s confirmation of the ARTM’s (Autorité régionale de transport métropolitain) remuneration. We will therefore be in a position to provide an update once the budget has been approved.”

“We are deeply concerned over this announcement, especially since the detailed plan has not been forthcoming. Our main objective is to minimize the impact of these changes on our members and on the services to the community,” said Stéphane Lamont, president of CUPE 2850, in their press release.

An STM metro station on Dec. 1, 2023. (Martin Daigle/CityNews Image)

There had been a back-and-forth regarding funding from the Quebec government for the STM, originally the transport minister said the province would only cover 20 per cent of their deficit, then Quebec raised that number to 70 per cent.

The union says it is meeting with STM management next week to discuss the restructuring plan.

“It is important that we protect not only jobs but also the quality of service to the public in spite of the financial challenges the STM has encountered,” the union’s statement reads.

The official opposition party at Montreal city hall reacted to the news of the job cuts. In a statement Christine Black, Official Opposition critic for public transit said: ”The Société de transport de Montréal presented a 2024 budget with a 63-member workforce reduction. Then, in front of the City of Montreal’s elected officials last Friday, the STM’s General Manager spoke of cutting 120 positions. Today, we learn that it will be 255 positions. Montrealers need to get their facts straight and stop being lied to.”

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