LTC to conduct third-party review of harassment policies

The London Transit Commission (LTC) will be hiring an outside agency to conduct a third-party review of their harassment procedures.

The move was announced at their monthly meeting Wednesday night, which was a lengthy one.

The LTC plans to partner with the city of London on the review, which initiated an independent review of its procedures by a Toronto-based law firm earlier this year.

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John Smith, the president of the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 741, says one of the reasons he was elected was to deal with these issues.

He tells 980 CFPL that they need to be dealt with sooner rather than later.

“I believe a union has to show the employer where the line is, and we’re past that line.”

“I hope we can address these issues, I’ve put them on notice that we are going to address these, and I hope we can do it in an amicable way before we get to collective bargaining.”

He says if the issues aren’t addressed before collective bargaining, it will make the situation much more difficult.

The third-party review will not only investigate the recent allegations against the commission but will also do a top-to-bottom review of the LTC’s complaint policies.

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The outside review will look at the process for filing a complaint, craft an alternative policy for employees who don’t feel safe using the current structure and investigate claims of harassment and discrimination levelled against the commission in recent days.

Smith says LTC employees need to know that their employer has their backs, and that hasn’t been the case.

“There has to be some kind of expectation that the employer supports these people, in almost all the meetings into, there is either no fault found, or it’s so minor it’s a waste of time.”

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More than 500 people work at the LTC, including 421 drivers.

Bill Leetjes, a current LTC employee, came forward to 980 CFPL will with allegations of workplace harassment.

“I knew that I was in the right, I’ve never doubted that, and I’ve always pursued that.”

“I’ve always said, if I’m wrong I’ll be the first to stand up publicly and say I’m wrong and take accountability. That’s what needs to take place, we need accountability so we can move forward.”

LTC is the latest city agency to review their workplace policies after allegations of harassment and bullying engulfed the London Fire Department last month and allegations at the London Police Service earlier this year.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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