Parents and drivers on Monday were bracing for a possible school bus strike Monday morning, including those in Queens who say the transportation gap will be quite the challenge. NY1's Roger Clark filed the following report.
As buses made their way through the fog from the Atlantic Express Depot in Queens Monday, drivers' thoughts were on an unclear future: On one hand because they might strike Wednesday, the other because they fear they may be left out of a new contract with bus operators.
"For us to lose what we have isn't fair, isn't fair to any human being that works for a living," said Roberto Mora, a school bus driver.
"Bus drivers do need job security, and it's very important to us," said Cardain Willimans, a school bus driver
Drivers who spoke with NY1 said they didn't feel their demands were unreasonable.
"You know what we want. We want a contract, and safety first for the kids. That's what we want," said Loammi Polanco, a school bus driver.
"We've got to feed our families too. We need our jobs," said another school bus driver.
Queens resident Sal Giacomazza has a 7-year-old who rides the bus to school. He says a strike would have a definite impact on his family.
"My problem is at the end of the day. My wife can't get to school in time to pick him up when they allow the kids out," Giacomazza said.
Giacomazza said he also helps out getting four or five other kids on the bus. He said getting them all to school if there is a strike will have to be a team effort.
"We're all trying to work together to see if one parent can pick them up and one parent can drop them off but it will definitely affect us," Giacomazza.
Giacomazza said he has high regard for his child's bus driver and believes it is a difficult job at times. He said they do a good job, and should get what they want when it comes to a contract.