BNSF on March 17 reported reaching an agreement with the International Brotherhood of Boilermakers (IBB) for paid sick leave.
This follows the Class I’s Feb. 23 announcement that it would grant individual paid sick days to its railroaders who are members of the Transportation Communications Union (TCU) and the National Conference of Firemen and Oilers (NCFO); and the March 9 announcement that it would provide sick leave to its railroaders who are members of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM), the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen (BRS), and the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers-Mechanical and Engineering Department (SMART-MD).
“Building upon existing BNSF paid time off and sickness benefits, IBB members will receive an additional four paid days off to use as sick days and gain the ability to convert up to three personal leave days to sick days each year,” according to the railroad. “More specific details regarding these new sick days will be provided to affected team members. BNSF remains committed to continued dialogue including the potential addition of paid sick days for those crafts that did not already have individual paid sick days prior to the recent national bargaining round.”
H.J. Res. 100, the House- and Senate-passed resolution that President Joe Biden signed into law on Dec. 2, 2022, imposed the Tentative Agreement resulting from President Emergency Board 250; it did not include paid sick leave.
While the House on Nov. 30, 2022, passed two resolutions (H.J. Res. 100 and H.Con. Res. 119) to impose on four holdout rail unions the Tentative Agreement accepted by eight others, and to amend that Tentative Agreement to include seven days of paid sick leave (that unions couldn’t gain in collective bargaining), the Senate on Dec. 1, 2022 agreed only to impose the Tentative Agreement.
In a precedent-setting move for the railroad industry, CSX on Feb. 7 reached agreements with the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employes Division-International Brotherhood of Teamsters (BMWED) and the Brotherhood of Railway Carmen (BRC) for paid sick leave; on Feb. 10, it added the IAM and NCFO; and on Feb. 14, added the IAM Roadway Mechanics division and the BRC Carmen for Fruit Growers Express Company division. The eight remaining unions, it is believed, will eventually accept the agreement.
Union Pacific (UP) on Feb. 20 followed suit, announcing agreements with the NCFO and BRC. On Feb. 22, Norfolk Southern reported reaching an agreement with the BMWED; on Feb. 24, it included the NCFO; on March 10, it added the SMART-MD and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW); and on March 15 added the IBB, IAM and BRC.