Seattle school bus drivers have reached a tentative agreement with their employer First Student following a week-long strike.
Teamsters Local 174 Secretary/Treasurer Rick Hicks and First Student Senior Director Kim Mingo met with a federal mediator, according to a spokesperson with First Student. The two parties released this statement Friday afternoon:
We are pleased to announce that First Student and Teamsters Local 174 leadership have come to terms on a fully-recommended tentative agreement.
We are confident that this contract will be ratified by union membership. The vote will take place tomorrow, Saturday, February 10 at 10 a.m. Upon ratification, yellow bus service will resume on Monday.
The agreement provides an expanded benefits package and comprehensive health care coverage for our Seattle Public Schools yellow bus drivers and families. We feel strongly that this deal meets the goals set by all parties in these negotiations.
First Student labor negotiators and Local 174 leaders have maintained open lines of communication throughout this process. Though this tentative agreement took longer than we had hoped, what brings us all together is our shared commitment to provide safe and reliable transportation for Seattle Public Schools students and families.
About 400 drivers with the union went on strike Feb. 1 after failing to agree on a contract with First Student, the company contracted by Seattle Public Schools to provide bus service to students. They have picketed at First Student’s Lake City and South Seattle locations since then.