Updated message about rapid transit service in Metro Vancouver

IMPORTANT UPDATE: CUPE Local 7000 and the BC Rapid Transit Company have reached a tentative agreement, thus averting a potential work action this week. SkyTrain operations will therefore be operating normally, although some relatively minor delays may be expected in the first few hours of Tuesday’s commute. All bus, SeaBus, HandyDART, Canada Line, and West Coast Express services will also be in full operation.

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A modified version of last month’s message follows…

Dear Graduate Students:

As you may be aware, SkyTrain operations may be shut down on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. If this job action occurs, we would strongly urge our members to restrict their travels to SFU to activities that require them to be physically present on campus. Since SFU and TransLink are only providing a limited number of additional transportation options for students, faculty, and staff, commuting delays are to be expected, especially during rush hour.

In spite of the best efforts of the GSS Executive Committee, SFU has not issued a directive requiring instructors to offer alternative class or examination options (such as online delivery) or otherwise proactively accommodate transit-dependent students during a shutdown of transit service. The GSS will of course continue to push the university to offer more student-oriented solutions, especially if strike action extends beyond this week.

At this time, we regret that we must encourage individual graduate students to communicate directly with faculty to work out accommodations with respect to their academic and research endeavours. If you are experiencing difficulties in this regard, please contact the GSS Advocate at advocate@sfugradsociety.ca to see if and how he may be able to assist you.

In the meantime, SFU has a transit strike webpage with some information and TransLink provides system-wide updates and information about specific bus routes on its Alerts and Advisory page. The GSS will continue to update students on an on-going basis regarding the strike, the university’s response, and our support systems.