: ‘This is a great deal for both sides’: Biden hails tentative pact to avoid railway strike hours before deadline

by | Sep 15, 2022 | Stock Market

President Joe Biden on Thursday hailed a tentative deal reached between the rail companies and unions to avert a strike that could exacerbate inflationary pressure. “This is a great deal for both sides,” Biden said in brief remarks in the White House Rose Garden, flanked by Labor Secretary Marty Walsh and other officials. “I thank the unions and the rail companies for negotiating in good faith.”

The president called the deal “a big win for America” and said workers would receive better pay, while calling the agreement a “victory” for companies, as well. A deal had to be reached by midnight to avert a shutdown. The agreement will go to union members for a vote after a post-ratification cooling-off period of several weeks. The National Carriers’ Conference Committee, which represents the railroads, said terms call for a 24% wage increase in the five-year period from 2020 to 2024, including a 14.1% increase immediately. The deal also calls for five annual $1,000 lump-sump payments. The railroads initially proposed a 16% wage increase over those years; the unions had asked for a 28% wage boost. Announcing the deal early Thursday, Walsh said talks had stretched for more than 20 hours straight.

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