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3/15/2005



Rail News: Labor

CN can lock-out workers, unions can strike if contract talks stall



Canadian National Railway Co. can legally lock out locomotive engineers, and signals and communications (S&C) employees in Canada, and the unions representing those workers have the right to issue a strike if either side provides at least 72 hours' notice.

The Canada Industrial Relations Board recently issued a decision allowing the lock out or strike as long as proper notice is given and CN agrees to maintain service during a lock out.

During the past few months, the Class I has been negotiating contracts with the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference, which represents 1,750 engineers, and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, which represents 630 S&C workers. Although negotiations have stalled, the parties plan to resume bargaining talks.

Last year, the railroad maintained service during a 30-day strike by the Canadian Auto Workers, which represents about 5,000 CN intermodal yard, clerical and shopcraft employees.

Last month, CN reached a tentative three-year agreement with the United Transportation Union (UTU) covering about 2,600 Canadian conductors, assistant conductors, yard employees and traffic coordinators. The UTU expects to announce ratification vote results in late April.


Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

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