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UPDATE: Railroads and Unions Reach “Tentative Agreement” to Prevent Strike


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Railroads and their unions reached a “tentative agreement” to avert a rail strike.

“There is a tentative deal to avoid a rail strike. Railroads say tentative agreements include a 24% wage increase during over by 2024 — w/14.1% bump effective immediately — and 5 annual $1,000 bonuses. Unions get their sick time demand. Deal followed a 20 hour negotiating session,” CBS News national correspondent Kris Van Cleave tweeted.

“The final deal was negotiated by the unions that represent engineers and conductors, but all 12 of the rail unions will likely benefit from the concessions railroads made because the unions that agreed to deals earlier all had provisions in their deals that will allow them to do that,” AP noted.

The raises workers will receive as part of this deal will be the biggest ones they’ve received in over four decades.

The railroad industry has said that average rail worker salaries will reach $110,000 by the end of this five-year deal in 2025.

The latest headlines show the tentative agreement goes back to unions for a vote:

  • RAIL PARTIES AGREE TO COOLING OFF PERIOD AS PART OF DEAL, A STANDARD PART OF RATIFICATION PROCESS IN CASE VOTE FAILS IN ORDER TO AVERT ANY SHUTDOWN -SOURCE
  • TENTATIVE U.S. RAIL DEAL GOES BACK TO UNIONS FOR A VOTE -SOURCE FAMILIAR WITH THE SITUATION

Amtrak “is working quickly to restore canceled long-distance trains” following the announcement of the tentative deal this morning, avoiding a rail strike Friday.

“Following 20 consecutive hours of negotiations at the Department of Labor, rail companies and union negotiators came to a tentative agreement that balances the needs of workers, businesses, and our nation’s economy,” according to a Labor Department statement Thursday morning.

A White House statement said:

“These rail workers will get better pay, improved working conditions, and peace of mind around their health care costs: all hard-earned. The agreement is also a victory for railway companies who will be able to retain and recruit more workers for an industry that will continue to be part of the backbone of the American economy for decades to come.”

Zero Hedge reported:

The breakthrough tentative agreement was announced one day before more than 100,000 rail workers were set to strike. Even though most rail unions already agreed on labor contracts, multiple unions holding out represented a large swath of rail workers. Such a disruption would’ve cost the US economy $2 billion per day, shuttering about 30% of domestic freight traffic and stoking inflationary pressures.

AP added:

Businesses that rely on the railroads said a strike would be devastating, and the Association of American Railroads trade group estimated that a work stoppage would cost the economy more than $2 billion a day. The talks included all the major U.S. railroads, including BNSF, Union Pacific, Norfolk Southern, CSX, Kansas City Southern and the U.S. operations of Canadian National. Canadian Pacific negotiates separately with its unions.



 

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