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Second US railroad Union rejects deal, risking nationwide strikes

A second railroad union has rejected the latest offer with 60% of the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen voting against the agreement

The rejection of the tentative agreement which aims to avoid nationwide strikes and includes US rail unions, freight companies and the Biden administration comes as the 10,000-strong Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen (BRS) voted down the offer 60.57% to 39.23%. The ballot achieved the highest voter turnout in BRS history.

Following the initial offer, which when tentatively agreed on September 15th 2022 helped to avoid initial strikes, both the BRS and the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees (BMWED) have now opted out, leaving just 3 unions yet to respond.

The decision to reject the national tentative agreement now results in a "status quo" period until December 4th in which the union will re-engage with the National Carriers Conference Committee so that discussions on future steps can advance.

All 12 of the USA's railroad unions, made up of 115,000 workers, must ratify the contracts in place in order to avoid nationwide strike action, however, with 2 unions so far refusing to ratify the agreement further negotiations will need to take place in order to break the deadlock.

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