Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Strike or lockout a possibility as CN talks come to a standstill

CN which provides Rail service to and from Ridley Island and the Fairview Container Terminal could soon be facing a labour disruption, as negotiations between the railroad and the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference headed into the final hours of a deadline of midnight Wednesday Ontario time.

The Teamsters Conference represents 2700 CN employees, from conductors, traffic coordinators and yardmen and entered the final hours of negotiations with a 90 per cent strike mandate. While union representatives continued to express the hope that they could avoid an interruption of service, the focus of many media reports on Wednesday was of the possibility of a work stoppage after 72 hours notice is served.

The union outlined its concerns over the current state of negotiations with a press release issued today which offered up their interpretation of the sticking points in this negotiating session.

CN was seeking flexibility and give and take from the talks, but was also preparing a contingency plane to continue its operations across the nation should any labour disruption come past the negotiating deadline.

The prospect of any interruption of service has user groups and economic officials across Northern BC concerned about the impact that a work stoppage might have on northern economies.

Initiatives Prince George weighed in with a press release today outlining their desire to see a negotiated settlement and the continuation of rail service across the Pacific Gateway corridor.

National Post-- CN, union at standstill

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