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Striking Bombardier rail workers headed back to bargaining table

Union says company will present an offer that could end strike.


November 6, 2012
by The Canadian Press

MONTREAL—Striking Bombardier railway workers in La Pocatiere, Que., have agreed to return to the bargaining table Wednesday at the request of the conciliator.

The union representing about 330 employees said it expects Bombardier will present a global offer that could end the strike that started last week.

Workers walked off the job claiming the lack of progress over 39 bargaining sessions since their contract expired in September 2011.

The union’s main issues are outsourcing, pensions and wages.

The strike is the first in more than 30 years at the plant northeast of Quebec City.

Bombardier said it was taking steps to avoid delivery delays for a series of railway projects, including subway cars for Toronto and Montreal.

The plant is building the sidewalls and roofs for an order from Toronto for 420 subway cars, and interior finishings for 706 Chicago transit cars. It also has contracts for 100 multi-level New Jersey transit cars, 54 multi-level cars for Maryland transit, along with nearly 500 Montreal Metro cars, which aren’t yet in production.

Bombardier also faces a strike of Learjet employees in Wichita, Kan. that’s in its fifth week.

©The Canadian Press