Unifor issues strike notice as VIA Rail negotiations continue


MONTRÉAL, July 9, 2022 /CNW Telbec/ – The 72-hour strike notice issued on July 7 by Unifor, the union representing some 2,400 VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) employees working in its stations, on board its trains, in its maintenance centres, the VIA Customer Centre, and administrative offices, is now down to less than 48 hours. This means, if VIA Rail and Unifor can not each an agreement, Canada’s national passenger rail service may be forced to suspend its services across its network at 12:01 a.m. (ET) on Monday, July 11, 2022 should no agreement be reached by that time.

As part of the usual collective agreement renewal process, and with the assistance of conciliators, VIA Rail and Unifor will continue to negotiate. VIA Rail remains committed to holding these negotiations in good faith in an effort to reach a new agreement without any disruption of service before the deadline.

Group of VIA Rail workers (CNW Group/Unifor)

“VIA Rail has made every effort to reach an agreement with UNIFOR. We continue to talk with the union and remain committed to negotiating a fair and reasonable contract,” said Martin R Landry, President and Chief Executive Officer. “Unfortunately, if no agreement is reached, VIA Rail will be forced to suspend all services for the duration of the strike and until normal operations can safely resume. We recognize that this would be a major disruption for our passengers and for communities across the country. This potential work disruption comes at a time when we have resumed nearly all of our services. We deeply regret that it will negatively impact our efforts to support the recovery of Canada’s tourism industry and cut off the essential role we play in transporting Canadians, and connecting many remote communities including indigenous communities.”

What if you already have a ticket to travel on VIA Rail?

Affected passengers may change their reservation at no cost (service charges will be waived during this time) or may opt for a full refund of unused tickets.

Customers looking for more information about VIA Rail’s services during the work disruption or with individual inquiries concerning their travel plans are invited to visit our website at viarail.ca, which will be updated regularly or call 1-888-VIA-RAIL (842-7245) or 1-800 268-9503 (TTY for the hearing impaired).

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SOURCE VIA Rail Canada Inc.

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