Canadian Pacific Railway service has been suspended after union workers began a strike early Wednesday.
CP management and the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference, the union representing 4,800 engineers, conductors and rail traffic controllers, are still in negotiations. Canadian Labor Minister Lisa Raitt was unable to get the two parties to agree to a contract before the midnight deadline.
“We have made every reasonable effort to get a settlement,” said Doug Finnson, TCRC vice president. “Every union member knows how important the outstanding issues are. We will not walk away from the negotiation table.”
Talks between the railroad and union resumed early this morning, he said. TCRC is trying to stop CP from shifting workers to a cheaper pension plan, and the union also said fatigue management issues haven’t been fully addressed.
The railroad said changes need to be made to the legacy pensions and post-retirement benefits to make CP competitive with other railroads. CP contributed about $1.9 billion of solvency deficit contributions to its pension plan in the last three years.
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