And this is one of those benefits.
I will say it again:
JoeyB ain’t new to this.
He true to this.
President Biden played the LONG GAME ….
Remember when Biden headed off a railroad strike by backing a contract that not all railroad workers liked, and said he would not stop pushing for the paid sick leave they wanted? This statement is worth reading. 👇 https://t.co/gvGyiifh5Z
— Heather Cox Richardson (TDPR) (@HC_Richardson) June 23, 2023
After months of negotiations, the IBEW’s Railroad members at four of the largest U.S. freight carriers finally have what they’ve long sought but that many working people take for granted: paid sick days.
This is a big deal, said Railroad Department Director Al Russo, because the paid-sick-days issue, which nearly caused a nationwide shutdown of freight rail just before Christmas, had consistently been rejected by the carriers. It was not part of last December’s congressionally implemented update of the national collective bargaining agreement between the freight lines and the IBEW and 11 other railroad-related unions.
“We’re thankful that the Biden administration played the long game on sick days and stuck with us for months after Congress imposed our updated national agreement,” Russo said. “Without making a big show of it, Joe Biden and members of his administration in the Transportation and Labor departments have been working continuously to get guaranteed paid sick days for all railroad workers.
“We know that many of our members weren’t happy with our original agreement,” Russo said, “but through it all, we had faith that our friends in the White House and Congress would keep up the pressure on our railroad employers to get us the sick day benefits we deserve. Until we negotiated these new individual agreements with these carriers, an IBEW member who called out sick was not compensated.”
While President Joe Biden was calling on Congress in November to pass legislation to implement the agreement, he stressed that he would continue to encourage the railroads to guarantee paid sick time for their employees.
“I share workers’ concern about the inability to take leave to recover from illness or care for a sick family member,” Biden said. “I have pressed legislation and proposals to advance the cause of paid leave in my two years in office and will continue to do so.”
That pressure, plus the IBEW’s ongoing efforts, is paying off at last. The IBEW and BNSF Railway reached an agreement April 20 to grant members four short-notice, paid sick days, with the ability to also convert up to three personal days to sick days. The union reached similar understandings with CSX and Union Pacific on March 22, and with Norfolk Southern on March 10. Unused sick time at the end of a year can be paid out or rolled into a worker’s 401(k) retirement account.
Now THIS needs to be spread far and wide.
Railroad members at four of the largest U.S. freight carriers now finally have paid sick days. They credit President Biden for refusing to give up on workers even after the original deal was negotiated to keep our supply chain… https://t.co/uKthyJYkVw pic.twitter.com/FkaDhzxfhk
— MeidasTouch (@MeidasTouch) June 23, 2023
There can be no doubt that this is the most PRO-LABOR President of my lifetime. Even if their rank and file don’t recognize it, the leadership does, which is why so many of them have come out in support of President Biden for the 2024 Election.
Part of being his age, and being in government for such a long time…is that he’s ok with getting the job done, even if he doesn’t get the headlines. He knows that a lot of the hard work IS NOT done before the cameras. And, that it is the work that makes the difference. Succeeding makes the difference in people’s lives.
When unions win, workers across the board win.
No one should have to choose between a paycheck and taking care of themselves or their loved ones – I won't stop fighting for paid sick leave for every worker in America. https://t.co/S3KaTjzmh4
— President Biden (@POTUS) June 26, 2023