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Saluting the “Solid Six”

They call themselves the “Solid Six.” These six Teamster school bus drivers at Durham School Services’ Milton yard in Santa Rosa County, Fla., wear their pride on their backs. Their shirts say, “Solid Six,” because they are six organizing committee members who stood strong during a very difficult anti-union campaign.

“We fought through so much adversity to organize, which is why we are a solid group,” said Sue Butt, one of the drivers.

The 200 drivers and monitors at the Milton, Pace and Navarre yards overcame an aggressive anti-union campaign by Durham management as they worked to form their union. They voted overwhelmingly to join Teamsters Local 991 in Mobile, Ala., in February. The company filed objections to their election, and a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) hearing officer in Florida recently recommended that all of the objections be dismissed. The company has now filed objections with the NLRB at the national level.

“Durham told us they would respect the outcome of our vote, but now they are challenging us any way they can. We stand stronger now than ever,” said Diane Bence, a driver.

By standing together, the "Solid Six" and their fellow co-workers from the Navarre and Pace yards have been able to bring safety, health and bus repair issues to the forefront.  By doing this they have forced Durham to address many issues, including bus repairs, rider safety and driver safety concerns. There are still many improvements to be made, and the drivers and monitors will continue to press for a safer, better workplace.  Their creed is now, "Together, we can make a difference!"

The “Solid Six” are Sunny Heggins, Sue Butt, Regina Hayman, Lester Hawthorne, Donna Snead and Linda Cramer.

“While we appreciate the recognition, the real heroes and heroines are all of our co-workers who have stood strong throughout our effort to make positive change at Durham,” said Sunny Heggins, a driver.

We salute the “Solid Six” and their co-workers in Santa Rosa County who set an example to us all for their dedication, determination and unity!