Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Solidarity Inaction: Railroad Workers and the Occupy Movement

... “During the whole port discussion, not one time did the word railroad get mentioned. Truckers were mentioned, but somehow the railroad was invisible despite large railroad tracks going into nearly every single one of these ports,” says Ron Kaminkow, General Secretary of Railroad Workers United, a caucus of rank-and-file reformers from 17 different railroad unions who are hoping to make the railroad unions more militant.
For the last several months, 17 different railroad unions—which represent a total of 105,000 railroad workers across three bargaining units—have been negotiating with an industry association of more than 30 railroad companies. Despite the four largest railroads making $8.5 billion in profits last year, the railroads have demanded that workers make big concessions including increasing their healthcare contributions by an average of $200 a month. Continued

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