Teamsters scuttle Canadian Pacific Rail strike, laud Trudeau
31 May 2018
The Canadian wing of the Teamsters union announced early Wednesday afternoon that it had reached a tentative contract settlement with Canadian Pacific (CP) Railway. At the same time, it ordered the more than 3,000 train operators who had walked out on strike less than 18 hours before to report to work as of 6 AM local time today.
The Teamsters have provided no details of the proposed four-year agreement, let alone given the striking train drivers and conductors the opportunity to study and vote on it prior to ordering them back to work.
CP Rail workers should have no doubt as to the significance of the union’s quick scuttling of their third strike in the past six years against a company that has spearheaded the drive of North America’s railways to boost profits by slashing jobs and gutting work rules.
The Teamsters have abandoned the strikers’ key demands—just as surely as they did in 2012, when they ordered compliance with a Conservative government back-to-work law, and in 2015, when they agreed, under the threat of similar legislation, to have all outstanding issues decided by a Conservative government-appointed arbitrator.
CP Rail CEO Keith Creel is already gloating over the agreement, boasting it will bring “long-term stability” to the railway, which has extensive operations across Canada and much of the US. Last year, his first at the helm of CP rail, Creel pocketed more than $20 million (US $15 million) in pay and bonuses.
In announcing the strike’s end, the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC) lavished praise on Canada’s Liberal government, Labour Minister Patty Hajdu, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for their supposed support for “collective…