By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez : sfexaminer – excerpt
Operators priced out of San Francisco argue for better wages, safe spaces to rest
San Leandro. Antioch. Hayward. Stockton.
San Francisco’s Muni operators hail from cities across the Bay Area, in part due to an exploding housing market that’s driven them farther and farther from The City.
And with that distance comes long commutes and sleep deprivation.
To avoid long hours on the road, Muni operators are increasingly sleeping in their cars on San Francisco streets or in city-operated garages, according to drivers and union officials.
Six Muni operators who consistently sleep in their cars while working for Muni spoke to reporters on Monday, alongside representatives of their union, the Transport Workers Union Local 250-A. They were hoping to sound the alarm on the link between low pay, distance to work and lack of sleep.
“There have been countless times when I finish a shift and have to sleep in [my] car,” said Alex Sobolev, a Muni operator…(more)