Please find the following excerpt from a press release issued by CN:
In light of recent labor developments in both the United States and Canada, we would like to provide you an update.
The U.S. Class I freight railroads, including CN, are currently in multi-employer “national bargaining” with 13 labor unions that collectively represent over 115,000 employees, including the vast majority of CN’s U.S. union-represented employees. This national bargaining process has been ongoing since January of 2020.
With the parties unable to reach a voluntary agreement, the negotiations are now entering the final dispute resolution process steps provided by the U.S. labor law that governs contract negotiations in the railroad industry - the Railway Labor Act or “RLA”. The latest change in the status of negotiations and the RLA dispute resolution process occurred on Friday, July 15, when U.S. President Joe Biden authorized the formation of a Presidential Emergency Board (PEB).
The PEB is charged with providing the President with a recommendation of contract terms that the Board believes would lead to a contract settlement between the negotiating parties. With the establishment of the PEB, the current contract terms remain in effect and neither the railroads nor the unions can exercise any self-help measures (such as strike, lockout or unilateral implementation of contract terms) during the 30 day PEB process and for at least 30 days after the PEB process concludes. If the parties are unable to reach an agreement after considering the PEB report, either negotiating party would then be able to exercise self-help.
Rail strikes in the U.S. are very rare given the extensive RLA dispute resolution processes and the role U.S. Congress can play in halting a work stoppage.
The U.S. national carriers have a website that provides extensive information regarding the status of the U.S. national bargaining. Please take full advantage of the website for any questions you may have: https://raillaborfacts.org/.
The collective agreements with the Teamsters Rail Conference of Canada (TCRC) for Conductors expire on July 22, 2022 and the current terms remain in force until the agreements are renewed in accordance with Part I of the Canada Labour Code. Collective bargaining for the renewal of the Conductors agreements has not commenced and as such, there can be no labour disruptions.
Hensall Global will continue to do our best to keep you informed of new developments as they are communicated to the industry.
HENSALL GLOBAL LOGISTICS