WASHINGTON - Metro is bracing for a shortage of workers on Friday after it said it has received “an unusually high number” of absence requests in light of rumors of a reported "sick out" being threatened by employees.
The transit system is currently in contentious contract negotiations with ATU Local 689, the union representing the majority of workers for Metro.
ATU Local 689 said in a statement in response to the rumored “sick out”:
“If you have received any information from management regarding employees calling in sick on Friday, it is not about contract negotiations or a right to strike.
“WMATA's policy requires that employees give a 72-hour advance notice in anticipation of being sick. If any Local 689 member has expressed to their superior that they may be sick on Friday they are adhering to WMATA's own policy.”
Union president Jackie Jeter told FOX 5 she is unaware of any "sick out" and said, "Members will be doing what they do every day, which is work and haul passengers."
Metro said in a statement Tuesday:
“Management is staffing based on an unusually high number of absence requests to ensure the delivery of service to customers.”