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Daily Talker: Union Challenging MBTA Cell Phone Ban For Drivers

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The union that represents MBTA drivers says it will go to court over the T’s new policy on cell phones.

The Boston Carmen’s Union says firing drivers just for carrying a cell phone on the job presumes they are guilty, and makes management the sole judge and jury.

“There are times when alternative communications, like cellphones, are actually needed on the bus – on an urgent basis for everyone’s protection,” the union said in a statement. “To the extent that the MBTA proposes to ban them all together, this policy offers no solution to safety emergencies.”

The MBTA announced the change on Monday, replacing a previous policy that called for a 10-day suspension for any driver in possession of a cellphone, and an automatic discharge if the device was being used.

It follows the crash of an MBTA bus in Newton last month that injured several people. Police say the driver had a cellphone in her hand at the time of the accident.

Do you agree with the T’s new policy banning employees from carrying cell phones? Or should drivers be allowed to have them in case of emergencies? Share your comments below, and watch for them on WBZ News in the Morning from 4:30 to 7:00 a.m.

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