DETROIT — Buses returned to Detroit streets Monday after a three-day work stoppage by drivers over coronavirus protections and disputes with riders.
Police officers will increase their presence as part of a deal between the city and Amalgamated Transit Union Local 26. Riders must continue to wear masks and they must not cross a barrier or approach the driver.
Drivers “generally do not feel safe at work due to violent and threatening circumstances presented by customers and members of the public,” the memo states.
Detroit buses serve an average of 85,000 people a day.
A driver was suspended for 29 days for a fight with a rider who boarded without a mask. Mayor Mike Duggan said the strike, which began Friday, was in response to the suspension.
Duggan said video of the incident was “disturbing.”
Union leader Glenn Tolbert said Duggan’s remarks were insensitive to drivers.
“We’ve had drivers stabbed and punched,” Tolbert said. “I think that’s the narrative the city would have preferred than a driver protecting himself. I don’t think that driver acted improperly.”