Business & Economy

Metro strike snarls transit in Brazil’s largest city

Sao Paulo, Mar 23 (EFE).- A strike here Thursday by metro employees forced hundreds of thousands of commuters to make other arrangements, adding to transport woes in this Brazilian megalopolis of 12 million people.

The system’s operator, a company owned by the Sao Paulo state government, said that the shutdown of four metro lines had a direct impact on 3 million people.

Buses and commuter rail lines linking the suburbs with the city center were packed, while large crowds gathered outside metro stations in search of information.

The strike was called by the main union representing the metro employees, which is demanding a pay hike and additional hiring, but management says it can’t afford to meet those demands due to financial strains left over from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Amid ongoing negotiations between management and the union, Brazil’s Labor Court has ordered the sides to ensure that the metro operates at a minimum of 80 percent of normal during rush hour and 60 percent the rest of the time for the duration of the strike. EFE cms/dr

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