September 15, 2022

UPDATE: The White House announcement:

Such good news for workers from last night's railway union negotiations. Via CNN:

Unions and management reached a tentative deal early Thursday, averting a freight railroad strike that had threatened to cripple US supply chains and push prices higher for many goods.

The deal with unions representing more than 50,000 engineers and conductors was announced just after 5 a.m. ET in a statement from the White House, which called it “an important win for our economy and the American people.”

A verbal agreement between the two sides was reached at about 2:30 am ET according to sources, and the final hours were spent getting the details worked out.

Here's a key point:

A union source said that Democrats’ refusal to side with management had been a key to the talks.

“Senate leaderership not acting gave space for these negotiations,” said the union source. He said that Walsh had “hung in” with the union during the negotiations.

Biden's personal approach seems to have helped:

President Joe Biden called in personally to talk to negotiators around 9 pm ET Wednesday, according to a person familiar with negotiations. Biden stressed that catastrophic harm could come to families, businesses and communities if the rail system shut down. Sources within the unions were giving Biden’s call credit for helping to get the deal completed without a strike.

Few details have been released, but workers seem to have gotten their concessions on working conditions:

“This is the quality of life issue we have been trying to get for our members since bargaining started,” said Dennis Pierce, president of the engineers’ union and the other union official involved in the talks.

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