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Stalled CPR/traffic-controllers union negotiations might lead to strike or lockout, BLE says

On June 18, more than 200 Rail Canada Traffic Controllers-Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers (RCTC-BLE) members might begin a strike against Canadian Pacific Railway — or find themselves locked out — if the two sides don't reach an agreement soon.

"Our union is seeking a pay scale similar to that of the Rail Canada Traffic Controllers employed by Canadian National Railway," said RCTC-BLE General Chairman J.E. Ruddick in a prepared statement. "We also
oppose the company's attacks on our work rules and their demands with
regards to changes in our benefits package."

RCTC and CPR began negotiating a contract Sept. 1, 2002. In March, the union filed for conciliation because the Class I "was placing additional demands on RCTC," BLE said. After Canada appointed a conciliator, the parties had until May 27 to reach an agreement.

Currently in a "cooling-off" period, both parties have a legal right to impose a strike or a lockout beginning June 18.

"Negotiations are at a stand-still — the parties are not talking," BLE officials said.

RCTC members are responsible for monitoring and managing train movement within an assigned territory.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 6/6/2003