Bus drivers protest change in DOL jobless benefit rules

Published: May. 16, 2012 at 4:31 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 24, 2012 at 2:20 AM EDT
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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - A protest outside the Georgia Dept. of Labor wrapped up late Wednesday morning. More than 100 school bus drivers are upset that they won't be getting unemployment benefits during the summer months.

They said they're laid off from school once the school year ends and they want their jobless benefits.

Bus drivers stood with their union representatives, trying to make a point and send a message to the state's labor department in Atlanta and DOL Director Mark Butler, that the change the agency made in the rule earlier this year is not sitting well with them.

The bus drivers said they weren't notified and that they're unprepared for the summer months without any compensation coming in.

"Nobody wants to do our job, but nobody wants to pay us. But then comes September, when we need bus drivers to do the job that nobody wants to do, what happens then? We're not out here to go on welfare," Leslie Jenkins, a bus driver with First Student.

The bus drivers started their protest on White Bluff Road and then group walked right up to the doors of the department of labor.

WTOC's Don Logana will have a report starting on THE News at 4 about what happened when they approached the office and how the state labor officials reacted to the crowd.

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