July 19, 2014
By Marc Bussanich
New York, NY—Working folk at Penn Station told LaborPress on Wednesday that they would have had very few options to travel if there was no railroad service over the weekend. On Friday they rejoiced that the MTA and the Long Island Railroad unions reached a tentative agreement with Governor Andrew Cuomo’s help.
Michael Sternbauch of Bayside, Queens said he was thrilled to hear that there would be no strike on Saturday at midnight.
“I thought it was really good, because sometimes it takes two to three hours to commute if I don’t take the railroad,” said Sternbach.
Had there been a strike, he would have had to take a bus to the subway and then walk to his final destination.
“I would have had to taken a bus, about half an hour to Flushing Main Street and then the 7 train to Times Square and then walk to Penn Station. So it saves a lot of time now that there isn’t a strike,” said Sternbach.
Another commuter, Joseph Aiello, works out at JFK Airport and said there would have been very few convenient travel options.
“The only option would have been driving in, which would have been a nightmare. It would have been ugly had there been a strike. I was pleasantly surprised when I heard the news this morning,” Aiello.
Flamora sells newspapers outside Penn Station on 7th Avenue. She said her customers, like her, are grateful there’ll be no strike over the weekend.
“I’m very, very happy. Many people use the trains everyday and we all say thank God,” she said.
If there had been a strike, Flamora said it would have been very difficult to get to Manhattan from Long Island and expensive.
“I would have had to sleep in Queens and spend a lot of money for a hotel.”