Unions Return To The Amtrak Bargaining Table, January 30 Strike Is Possible – 01/17/08
By Doug Cunningham
Armed with a Presidential Emergency Board recommendation that Amtrak essentially agree to the union position, bargaining resumed Wednesday between Amtrak and several unions. Because Amtrak took a take it or leave it stance refusing to bargain in good faith, workers have gone eight years without a new contract agreement. If they can’t agree to a contract there could be a nationwide Amtrak strike January 30th. Don Griffin is Director of Strategic Coordination and Research for the Teamsters’ Brotherhood of Maintenance and Way.
[Griffin]: “It would effect freight railroad. It would be a nationwide strike. It would have impact on the freight railroads and it would have a substantial effect on commuter operations from Boston to Washington, D.C. Look, the last thing we want to do is go on a strike, have a strike. The members lose money, they lose benefits, the public is inconvenienced. What we wanted was a voluntary agreement. And we were just unable to get to the point where we had serious discussions with Amtrak.”