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Rail companies have been cutting costs to the bone, and workers are fed up

By Admin

Reported by Laura Clawson for Daily Kos.

Supply chain problems could get much, much worse in September if 115,000 railroad workers go on strike. The workers have gone more than two years without a contract, dealing with one cut after another, including job cuts that have led to serious understaffing. The rail companies have been very profitable as they’ve put these and other cuts into place, but they’ve continued to squeeze workers—and they’re making moves that could harm a lot of people beyond their own workers. In fact, many observers say the rail companies have contributed to supply chain problems as they’ve tried to cut costs to the bone.

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TTD Statement on FAA’s Secondary Barrier Rule

By Samantha Brown

WASHINGTON – Greg Regan, President of the Transportation Trades Department (TTD) of the AFL-CIO, released the following statement in response to the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) proposed rule requiring newly manufactured commercial airplanes to have physical secondary barriers to impede unauthorized access to the flight deck: “The implementation of the secondary flight deck barriers rule, which Congress […]

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Railroads oppose FRA’s proposed train crew rule, labor backs it

By Admin

Reported by Progressive Railroading.

The Federal Railroad Administration’s proposed two-person train crew rule is drawing opposition from the industry’s two major trade associations and support from transportation labor unions.

Officials from both the Association of American Railroads and the American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association announced their disappointment with the rule, which the FRA announced yesterday.

The rule would require at least two crew members for all railroad operations, with exceptions proposed for those operations that do not pose significant safety risks to railroad workers, the public or environment. It also would establish minimum requirements for the location of crew members on a moving train.

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Trains to Need at Least Two Crew Members Under Proposed Rule

By Admin

Reported by Lillianna Byington for Bloomberg Government.

The Transportation Department is advancing a proposal to mandate at least two crew members on trains, a move that railroads argue would hurt the industry and should be reconsidered.

The proposed rule, set to publish in the Federal Register Thursday, would allow for some exceptions and includes a process for railroads to petition the Federal Railroad Administration to continue existing or new one-person crews. The controversial action comes after Republicans and industry representatives argued that a crew-size mandate isn’t needed, while labor unions supported the efforts, saying reducing operators would jeopardize safety.

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FRA proposes minimum 2-member crew size for most trains

By Admin

Reported by Joanna Marsh for Freightwaves.

A train crew would typically have to include at least two people under a rule proposed by the Federal Railroad Administration.

The proposal — which drew conflicting responses from the Association of American Railroads and the Transportation Trades Department of the AFL-CIO — comes as labor unions and the railroads are at loggerheads over a labor contract, while questions about technology’s role in freight rail operations loom large. The requirement would reverse a May 2019 decision that a rule governing train crew size wasn’t warranted.

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Rail Unions Welcome FRA’s Two-Person Crew Rule 

By Samantha Brown

WASHINGTON – Greg Regan, President of the Transportation Trades Department (TTD) of the AFL-CIO, released the following statement in response to the Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) proposed rule establishing a minimum requirement of two person crews for most freight and passenger railroad operations: “Transportation labor welcomes the FRA’s proposed rule requiring a minimum of two crew members […]

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New rule to thwart railroad efforts to cut train crews to 1

By Admin

Reported by Josh Funk for AP News.

Major railroads will be required to maintain two-person crews under a new rule announced Wednesday that will thwart industry efforts to cut crews down to one person.

The Federal Railroad Administration said in a rule published in the Federal Register that railroads will be required to continue using two-person crews in most circumstances as they haul all kinds of cargo, including hazardous materials, across the country. But there will be an exception to allow short-line railroads that have already been using one-man crews to continue using them and railroads can apply for permission to use smaller crews if they can prove it is safe.

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Supply chains: The rail labor mayhem that Biden entered has been brewing for years

By Admin

Reported by Dani Romero for Yahoo Finance.

Rail workers across the country were set to walk off the job on July 18 before President Joe Biden intervened, the latest development in a contentious saga that has been brewing for years.

In an executive order signed on July 15, Biden established an emergency three-person board of arbitrators to work with the freight railways and their 115,000 workers to hammer out a contract that has been under negotiations since January 2020.

“The president’s goal is to make sure America’s freight rail system continues to run without disruption, delivering the items that our families, communities, farms, and businesses rely on,” the White House stated in a press release.

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FEDERAL COMMISSION SEEKS TO MEDIATE RAILWAY WORKER CONTRACT DISPUTE

By Admin

America’s Workforce Union Podcast

Samantha Brown, Communications Director for the Transportation Trades Department of the AFL-CIO, joined the America’s Work Force Union Podcast and discussed how the Presidential Emergency Board, appointed by President Biden, seeks to reach a contractual agreement between the United Rail Unions and the railroads.

Biden recently announced the formation of the board under the process laid out by the Railway Labor Act after voluntary bargaining between the unions and the freight railroads stalled. Brown explained this was due to the railroads negotiating in bad faith. It is the final attempt to reach an agreement before a work stoppage or a lockout occurs, she added.

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Rail Labor Statement on National Contract Proposals

By Samantha Brown

WASHINGTON – The Transportation Trades Department (TTD) of the AFL-CIO today released the following statement on behalf of the 13 rail worker unions involved in the ongoing national contract negotiations with the freight railroads: “Today, July 24, 2022, the United Rail Unions, who are bargaining as part of the Coordinated Bargaining Coalition and the Brotherhood […]

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