Three unions representing railroad workers this week ratified contracts with major U.S. railroads, leaving only one union to not have finalized an agreement over a dispute that nearly resulted in a national labor action in early December.
The pacts reached by the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers & Trainmen, the National Conference of Firemen and Oilers and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers brings the number of ratified contracts to seven. Five other unions have reached tentative agreements that their members must ratify.
“The month-long ratification process has finally come to an end, and our members have made a wise decision,” said IBEW President Ed Hill. “This agreement, reached in record time, will provide our members with a decent standard of living well into the future.”
The Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees, the only union that has not reached an agreement with the railroads, did agree to an extension of the cooling-off period until Feb. 8. The threat of a national labor action was averted amid the peak holiday shipping season after two unions reached tentative agreements before the Dec. 6 deadline.