Freight Rail Negotiations Enter Cooling Off Period

The National Mediation Board (NMB) ordered a thirty-day cooling off period that ends October 7, 2011 in Freight Rail negotiations between the IAM, TCU, nine other unions and the National Carriers’ Conference Committee (NCCC), the bargaining arm of the nation’s Class I freight rail carriers.

At the end of the thirty-day period, the unions and carriers can engage in self-help, which means the unions may strike or the carriers can lockout workers.

The President of the United States, however, can extend the 30-day period by appointing a Presidential Emergency Board (PEB) to investigate the dispute and make recommendations to the President. If the President appoints a PEB, which is expected, the “status quo” must remain in effect throughout the PEB process – no strikes, lockouts, or unilateral changes to terms of employment can occur.

“In the last couple of contracts we took less because the Carriers business was down. We brought their business back, now it’s time for the Carriers to give us what we deserve and not their unjustified demands for major concessions to the health plan,” said District 19 President and Directing General Chairman Joe Duncan in a bulletin to members. “The Carriers are making more money than ever before. It is time for them to reward us for our hard work and dedication.”

For more information on Freight Rail negotiations, go to www.iamdl19.org.