"Virtually every career employee — as many as 97 percent in one recent year — applies for and gets disability payments soon after retirement...The L.I.R.R.’s disability rate suggests it is one of the nation’s most dangerous places to work. Yet in four of the last five years, the railroad has won national awards for improving worker safety."
From the article:
During contract negotiations in 1994, management also tried to take a stand against work rule provisions that inflated earnings. But the political will to fight for these changes evaporated after workers went on strike, as they were legally entitled to do, unlike some other transit workers.
"What’s lacking is leadership on the public side, people with strong beliefs and the courage to act on those beliefs," said Louis Anemone, a former security director of the transportation authority. "There’s no stomach for it on the management level, and none of it on the political level."
There is a reason for that, Mr. Quinn [general chairman of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen at the LIRR] says: "We move millions of people a week. And for this railroad to stop, people would be screaming. Politicians would have to answer questions: ‘What the hell is this? What are you doing?’ So they let us kind of co-exist."
You must read the rest of the article
(may require free liberal newspaper sign-up) - just another reason why cost of living is so high here in the metro NY area.
When leadership is dubious - like with the LIRR or Lehman, etc. - this stuff just happens. And we pay for it. LOL