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News & Information

The MTA Announces Free On-Site COVID Testing

The MTA will be implementing free on-site COVID – 19 testing and screening to thousands of transit workers every week. The early detection program, believed to be the first of its kind for transit workers in the United States, involves voluntary testing at select bus depots and rail yards, NYC Transit Medical Assessment Centers and MTA Occupational Health Services facilities. Members also are encouraged to schedule free tests at their nearest Northwell Urgent Care facility as they have been allowed to for months.  With positive rates increasing, we believe on-site testing will play a critical role in minimizing the spread in the MTA and we encourage our members to take advantage of the voluntary testing.
 
The on-the-job testing locations will be changed and rotated on a regular basis. The MTA will give priority to locations in hotspot and cluster zones identified by New York State. The goal is to test up 15% of transit workers weekly.  Click here for the current schedule.

Northwell Health-GoHealth Urgent Care locations are located at 52 locations throughout the region and are open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. on weekends. For more information, visit http://Gohealthuc.com/nyc. Scheduling is recommended for tests at MACs 1, 3 and 5 but walk-ins are also accepted.

Do antibiotics beat all the infections? Antibiotics from antibioticspharm.com/ are efficient against bacterial infections, but when it comes to viruses, they have no chance. So the doctor only can prescribe antibiotics, knowing your diagnosis for sure.

MAC 1 – (347) 643 8274 -- 180 Livingston St., 5th Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201
MAC 3 – (212) 544 3218/3172 -- 3961 10th Avenue, New York, NY 10034
MAC 5 – (718) 714 3123 -- 2556 McDonald Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11223

MTA Announces Free Flu Shot (Seasonal Influenza) Locations

MTA/NYCT will be administering free flu shots to all active employees at locations across the five boroughs. Click here for locations.

The MTA has also teamed up with Walgreens to encourage all employees to protect themselves with a free flu shot.

Walgreens makes it easy by offering flu shots every day. You can redeem your voucher at any of the Walgreens and Duane Reade retail pharmacy locations-appointments are not necessary. You can get your seasonal flu shot at a time and location convenient for you. When you get your flu shot, present your MTA photo ID with your voucher. Consult with your Walgreens pharmacist if you have any questions or concerns. To find the Walgreens nearest you, call 800-WALGREENS  (800-925-4733) or visit Walgreens.com/FindAStore.

MTA Forces Union to File for Impasse

*** Oct. 27 - Up-date ***

On October 8, 2020, we met with the MTA and the PERB mediator to discuss our OA/TA/MTA Bus 28-month contract impasse.  Knowing the MTA’s bargaining position is not going to change, without the Federal relief they are lobbying for, our goal was to get the MTA and mediator to agree that the parties will not be able to come to a negotiated settlement.  After much persistence on our part, the mediator finally agreed that the parties are indeed at an impasse and that she would not further delay the process from moving forward.

Subsequently, we filed two separate (OA/TA and MTA Bus) petitions to Director of Conciliations asking the PERB Board to refer our impasses to Interest Arbitration.  We had asked the MTA to agree to consolidate the MTA Bus impasse with the OA/TA impasse, but they refused to include the MTA impasse with the OA/TA impasses.  Therefore, we will try to proceed with both of these impasses at the same time.  The next step is for the PERB Board to approve our arbitration petition.  Once that is done the parties will select an impartial arbitrator and schedule hearing dates.


New TSO Dental Plan Implementation

*** UP-DATE - September 21st ***

THE DENTAL CHANGE FORM IS AVAILABLE BELOW

The new Cigna Dental Plans are scheduled to go into effect on October 1st.

Member can click here the look-up Cigna in-network dentists in our area.

Choose Cigna DPPO Advantage plan if you are mapped to the PPO plan

Choose  Cigna Dental Care Access plan if you are mapped to the DHMO plan

All members and retirees should have received the introductory letter the BSC mailed out last week. You should have also received a Cigna Welcome Kit.  Members who are currently in MetLife or the Dental Shop PPO/Fee for Service plans will be "mapped" or automatically enrolled in the new Cigna PPO plan.  If would like to remain in the PPO plan then you DO NOT need to do anything.  Members currently enrolled in Healthplex or American Dental DHMO plans will be "mapped" or automatically enrolled the Cigna DHMO plan.  All members mapped to the new Cigna DHMO plan WILL HAVE TO CHOOSE a primary care Dentist in the new plan.  Information on how to do this will be included in the Cigna information kit.  Cigna will set up a dedicated HOT Line 800 578-5682 to assist our members during the transition.

The Union is suggesting that anyone currently or being mapped to the PPO plan should consider enrolling in the new DHMO plan.  There are no annual maximums and one implant per calendar year is fully covered under the new DHMO plan.

Click here for the CHANGE Form.  The form is also available through the portal.

Any member who would like to change the type of plan they are being "mapped" to (PPO to DHMO or DHMO to PPO) needs to submit the change form to the BSC by September 18th. 

We will post additional information as it becomes available.

*Members currently enrolled in the Hi-option dental plan (Emblem) will not receive the above mailings.  The Union has filed a grievance over the Authority's refusal to allow our members who are enrolled in the hi-option dental to enroll in the enhanced Supervisors Dental Plan.  We should have a decision from the arbitrator on this by September 21st.


2020 Election Information

The 2020 elections are less than two months away – with early and absentee voting starting as soon as the end of this month in some states. This will be a unique election for all of us. Social distancing will make getting out the vote look very different than usual. We’ve all adjusted to the new day-to-day of these challenges and we have learned best practices that we can apply to planning when, how, and where we will vote. Whether you are getting your ballot delivered to you through the United States Postal Service or you are planning to safely go to the polls, we want you to be prepared and ready to cast your ballot under these extreme circumstances.

Please click HERE for help navigating your way through this election:

The MTA Is Facing A Five Alarm Fire

The below appeared in the NY Times Op-ed by Patrick J. Foye and John Samuelsen on Sept. 1, 2020

As chief executive of North America’s largest transportation system, and as president of the country’s biggest transit workers’ union, we have had our fair share of disputes. But we agree on this: The Metropolitan Transportation Authority is facing a five-alarm-fire — and the Republican majority in the U.S. Senate seems content to sit back and do nothing while it burns.

This isn’t hyperbole. The numbers are staggering: a $16 billion deficit through 2024, with $200 million in revenue losses every week. The pandemic has caused precipitous declines in ridership, fare revenues, tolls and subsidies. Pandemic-related expenses, like the cleaning and disinfecting of train cars, have soared.

COVID-19 Updates

As you know, there are a number of wage replacement programs available to you including, administrative leave, (CARES) EPSLA, and the NY State NYSCPSL.  These programs were implemented on different dates with slightly different eligibility requirements and rates of wage replacement.  This has caused some confusion amongst our members and in some instances has been misapplied by the Authority.  If you have been quarantined and/or contracted COVID-19 and were forced to use your accrued leave to cover the absence we ask that you contact your chairperson so that we can verify that you were paid correctly.

We have filed a grievance regarding the MTA’s application of the 10-day paid administrative leave for members who have been quarantined more than once due to their close contact with an employee who has tested position of COVID-19.  The Authority is taking the position that administrative leave for this purpose only applies once to each employee.  We disagree with their position.  An arbitration hearing was held and at the direction of the arbitrator the parties are currently trying to come to an agreement on this issue.  If you have been quarantined more than once for being in close contact with an employee who has tested positive for COVID-19 and were forced to use your accrued leave balances to cover your quarantine please contact your chairperson immediately.

It has been our position that any member who has contracted COVID-19 and was currently working before they tested positive for the virus the presumption is that you contract it on the job and is therefore a work-related illness. Any members who have tested positive for COVID-19 should contact Pasternack Tilker Ziegler Walsh Stanton & Romano to discuss their case.

In April we signed an agreement with the Authority that included our members in the 500k line of duty death benefit.  In May the Governor signed into law the COVID-19 Death Benefit legislation granting new accidental death benefits to the beneficiaries of members who died after contracting COVID-19. In July these benefits were added to the OA Pension Plan and the MTA DB Pension Plan.

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