As of one minute past midnight a strike at Canadian Pacific began which will affect both passenger and freight service in Canada.
In a posting on the Teamsters Canada website it was announced, “The parties were unable to reach an agreement despite last minute negotiations right to the strike deadline.”
It went on to explain, “We have made every reasonable effort to get a settlement, said Doug Finnson, vice-president of Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC). Every union member knows how important the outstanding issues are. We will not walk away from the negotiation table. “
TCRC remains committed to do the best for its members. The strike has now started but talks will resume first thing in the morning.
Kevin Hyrsak is a CP Rail Spokesperson. According to Hyrsak the union has been without a contract since Jan 1, 2012 with preliminary talks between the union and CP Rail starting in October 2011.
“At this time the union will be withdrawing its freight and passenger services in Canada. As such we are enacting a detailed plan for a safe and structured shutdown of these operations in our network,” Hyrsak said.
Hyrsak was hopeful that a deal could still be worked out.
“We are in continued talks and hoping to come to some agreement. We at CP remain willing to participate in binding arbitration under good negotiations,” Hyrsak said.
In a statement Federal Labour Minister Lisa Raitt says government is making preparations to table back-to-work legislation to end the strike at Canadian Pacific Rail , but urges both sides to keep talking to come to an agreement.