Unifor

In September 2021, VIA Rail Canada took delivery of the first of 32 new Siemens trainsets, and on Nov. 30, revealed it to the public; testing started in December. (Photograph Courtesy of VIA Rail Canada)

Canada Commits to Passenger Rail Revival With HFR Certainty

Canada’s public passenger railway VIA Rail has been pulled back from pandemic-induced oblivion by a federal government now framing the scheme for a dedicated, electrified right-of-way linking Quebec City and Toronto as a certainty for the first time since the project was first revealed in 2015.

The two-year agreements, which run from Jan. 1, 2020, to Dec. 31, 2021, include a 2% wage increase for 2021, benefits improvements, and the review of several work rules for Unifor 1 (off-train) and Unifor 2 (on board train) employees.

VIA Rail, Unifor Ratify Agreements

VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) has ratified collective agreements with Unifor Council 4000, the union representing more than 1,600 employees in stations, on board trains, in call centers and in administrative offices.

According to VIA Rail, negotiations for the collective agreements that expired Dec. 31, 2019 had been postponed in March 2020 due to the pandemic. The bargaining process with Unifor 1 (off-train employees), Unifor 2 (onboard train employees) and Unifor 3 (shopcraft personnel) resumed in fourth-quarter 2020. (CNW Group/Unifor)
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VIA Rail, Unifor Reach Tentative Agreements

VIA Rail Canada has reported reaching tentative agreements on a two-year contract renewal for more than 2,400 of its employees, who are represented by Unifor and serve as maintenance workers, on-board service personnel, chefs, sales agents and customer service staff.

Tentative pact for CN, union

The largest Canadian freight railroad said that it has reached agreement following negotiations with a key union in its nationwide network.

Unifor threatening to strike CN

Unifor, the largest union at CN, with more than 4,800 members (mechanics, clerical workers, excavator operators, locomotive engineers, and truck drivers) covered by six collective agreements, said on Feb. 19, 2015 that it will be commencing strike votes at CN as of early the week of Feb. 23 “after five months of futile negotiations.” The union’s current collective agreement expired on Dec. 31, 2014, and negotiations had been taking place since September.

CN to Unifor: We won’t fill your political trough

CN said on Feb. 18, 2015 that the Unifor union, which represents approximately 4,800 CN employees in mechanical, intermodal, clerical and other areas in Canada, “continues to reject a fair company offer to reach a new collective agreement in line with settlements it has negotiated with three other unions.”