Rail workers are ‘enraged’ and feel ‘mistreated,’ says a union president. It could end in a holiday season strike that would send shockwaves through the US economy.

Freight trains sit parked in a railroad yard ahead of a potential rail workers union strike in Louisville, Kentucky on Sept. 14, 2022.

Rail workers might go on strike in December, potentially rattling the supply chain and the whole economy.
The president of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) said workers are enraged.
BLET narrowly voted to ratify an agreement with management, but another major union voted to reject.

Rail workers are once again gearing up for a strike that could send shockwaves through the US economy. 

Railroad unions are split on whether or not to move forward with a deal brokered with management in September. The tentative agreement, which offered workers a 24% pay increase but just one extra paid day off, came after nearly a full day of negotiations at the Department of Labor brokered by the Biden administration.

But for some workers, that agreement was not enough. The country’s two biggest rail unions’ votes yielded one slim acceptance and one slim rejection, indicating that some workers still want more from a deal. Ultimately, if any union goes on strike, other rail unions likely will not cross the picket line.

A strike by rail workers would send ripple effects throughout the supply chain, and could even plunge the already teetering US economy into a recession, Ted Stank, faculty director of the Global Supply Chain Institute at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, told Insider. 

Major products shipped by train include industrial materials like petroleum, coal, and lumber, whereas most consumer products you’d buy in a store are transported by truck. 

That means if a strike does take place, the average shopper wouldn’t feel the effects right away. But, Stank said, if materials typically shipped by rail have to be temporarily transported by truck as a result …read more

Source:: Businessinsider

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