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ATU Stands in Solidarity with Railroad Workers, Demands Congress Grant Sick Days

Silver Spring, MD – Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) International President John Costa released the following statement regarding the congressional vote to settle the national rail labor contract. 

“Our nation’s railroad workers are essential workers who keep our economy moving and deliver critical resources and supplies to communities throughout our nation, especially during the pandemic. They deserve to be treated with dignity, respect, fair wages, and fundamental rights, including paid sick leave to take care of themselves and their families.

“While progress was made in negotiations on key issues for these workers, railroad companies, which continue to see record level profits, are holding the American economy hostage over providing paid sick leave for their workers. These workers have endured extreme stress and illness, but the railroad companies won’t stop their relentless attacks on their workers’ well-being – and all for the sake of profit.  

“Now, this issue is before Congress to decide what these workers deserve. Congress has the opportunity to change this moment in American history and ensure that rail workers have the sick leave they desperately need and deserve. 

“The ATU urges Congress to vote in favor of guaranteeing rail workers paid sick leave. That’s what this is all about. Paid sick leave. It is the right of every American to be able to take care of our own health and the health of our family.

“The culpability here is directly on the railroad companies and their refusal to provide a sick leave policy for their workers. We can keep our economy going and, at the same time, treat workers with dignity and respect.  

“This isn’t just a fight about rail workers, it's about the rights of every worker to secure paid sick leave and fair treatment.”