Posts tagged Congress

    Rail workers warn of exodus after Congress forces through deal

    December 8, 2022 // Railroad workers could leave the industry after Congress forced through a contract that does not provide them any paid sick days, an exodus that would ripple through an economy reliant on freight railroads to transport goods. The exit of thousands of train conductors and engineers would be felt by major corporations and U.S. consumers alike. It could slow the delivery of food, fuel and online orders while strangling already-shaky supply chains. Trillium Asset Management,

    The ‘pro-union’ president risks the support of a key constituency to avert a rail strike

    December 5, 2022 // Biden faces a backlash from a core of rail workers and allied groups, as some of them see his push for a measure to avoid a strike as a betrayal. He signed the measure, which passed with bipartisan support, at the White House on Friday, giving rail workers a significant raise, but denying them the paid sick leave that had been a sticking point in some of the contract talks. Hours later, he arrived at the John F. Kennedy Library in Boston and was met by scores of protesters objecting to his handling of a labor dispute that threatened to halt rail service at the peak of the holiday season.

    Railroad workers aren’t the only Americans without paid sick days

    December 2, 2022 // While the vast majority of union members have paid sick days, the freight railroad workers do not. Among other demands, they have been threatening to strike in order to get paid sick days that are not in the current contracts. The railroads say that workers can use personal time if they need a sick day. But the unions argue that with current staffing levels and scheduling rules, it’s difficult for workers to have personal days approved, and they are likely to be penalized or even fired if they call in sick anyway.

    Unions bash senators for rejecting paid sick leave for rail workers

    December 2, 2022 // Labor leaders lashed out Thursday at senators who voted against a proposal to provide rail workers with seven days of paid sick leave. While the Senate overwhelmingly approved a measure to force through a railroad contract that gives workers a 24 percent raise over five years, a proposal to add paid sick days to the deal failed to reach 60 votes. All but six Republicans voted against the measure.

    NY POST Opinion: Union Joe suddenly turns into Union-Buster-in-Chief — to save himself

    December 1, 2022 // With Americans already facing Bidenflation and a potentially painful recession, a rail strike would utterly slam the nation’s economy — and his legacy. “I am calling on Congress to pass legislation immediately to adopt the Tentative Agreement [reached in September by] railroad workers and operators,” Biden said Monday, insisting no “path to resolve the dispute at the bargaining table” exists. Hmm. Just this year he was backing unionization of Amazon workers, warning, “Amazon, here we come. Watch.” Last year, too, he pushed unionization drives and praised organized labor for winning workers better terms. His proposed Protecting the Right to Organize Act and American Jobs Plan aimed to unionize practically the entire US workforce (by nixing states’ right-to-work laws, for example).

    ‘Joe Biden blew it’: Rail workers union lashes out at the White House

    November 30, 2022 // “Joe Biden blew it," Railroad Workers United said in a press release. "He had the opportunity to prove his labor-friendly pedigree to millions of workers by simply asking Congress for legislation to end the threat of a national strike on terms more favorable to workers. Sadly, he could not bring himself to advocate for a lousy handful of sick days. The Democrats and Republicans are both pawns of big business and the corporations.” Biden frequently calls himself the most pro-union president in history, yet he's now urging Congress to use the power granted it under the Railway Labor Act of 1926 to avert a strike that would cause severe economic disruption. After meeting with Biden at the White House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) vowed Congress would take up a bill this week to avert a strike. Biden has called on railway workers to accept the labor contract brokered by the White House in September, warning that a strike threatens “crippling” disruption.

    Biden to Congress: Intervene in labor dispute, avert rail strike that would ‘devastate’ US

    November 29, 2022 // With a Dec. 9 strike deadline fast approaching, Biden urged Congress to adopt "without any modifications or delay" an agreement brokered by the White House in September between labor unions and rail operators. Four of the 12 unions have voted to reject the five-year agreement, which was intended to avoid a shutdown of the nation's freight rail system. "A rail shutdown would devastate our economy," Biden said in a statement. "Without freight rail, many U.S. industries would shut down. My economic advisors report that as many as 765,000 Americans – many union workers themselves – could be put out of work in the first two weeks alone. Communities could lose access to chemicals necessary to ensure clean drinking water. Farms and ranches across the country could be unable to feed their livestock."

    Largest U.S. rail labor union votes against contract, raising strike possibility

    November 21, 2022 // Workers at the largest U.S. rail union voted against a tentative contract deal reached in September raising the possibility of a strike in the coming weeks that could cause significant damage to the U.S. economy. Train and engine service members of the transportation division of the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail, and Transportation Workers (SMART-TD) narrowly voted to reject the deal, while members of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) voted to ratify the agreement and SMART-TD yardmasters voted to ratify their national agreement, the unions said Monday.

    Looming rail strike could impact US economy ahead of holidays

    November 17, 2022 // All 12 rail unions must approve their deals to prevent a strike, although no strike is imminent because all the unions have agreed to keep negotiating even if their members vote no, until a deadline early next month. Seven other unions have ratified the five-year deals that include 24% raises and $5,000 in bonuses. The focus now is on the three unions that have voted down their agreements and the remaining two that haven't finished voting.

    LINDA MCMAHON: Here’s What A New Congress Should Do To Help America’s Small Businesses

    November 14, 2022 // Unfortunately, the Biden administration announced last month that they would be ending Industry-Recognized Apprenticeship Programs due to strong pressure from labor unions. These America First programs, which came from a 2017 “Expanding Apprenticeships in America” executive order, provide individuals with opportunities to obtain relevant workplace knowledge and skills through public-private partnerships with third-party employers.