Statement by APWU President Mark Dimondstein on Congressional Action Against the Union Rights of Railroad Workers

The right to strike, the right of all workers to withhold their labor to improve their well-being, is a fundamental and vital working class right.

It was the Great Postal Strike of 1970 that laid the foundation for the standard of living, rights and benefits we enjoy today as postal workers, including our right to collective bargaining.

While striking is hard on workers, it is a powerful weapon of last resort when workers face off against greedy, unscrupulous companies and their benefactors of Wall Street finance capital.

On December 1, Congress, at the urging of the White House and with bipartisan action, attacked and undermined the entire labor movement and the right to strike by imposing a “tentative agreement (TA)” on the country’s unionized Class 1 railroad workers. Members of four of the 12 rail unions, representing the majority of 100,000 railroad workers, had already democratically voted to reject the TA and were ready to begin strike action on December 9.


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