Company urges Teamsters to work toward settlement to avoid strike
threatened for Saturday, Nov. 28
MONTREAL, Nov. 25 /CNW Telbec/ - CN (TSX: CNR)(NYSE: CNI) today received a 72-hour strike notice from the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC) of its plan to strike the company at 0001 hours Nov. 28, 2009.
CN said the TCRC's decision is unfortunate because a strike is in no one's interest - not the locomotive engineers, CN's other employees, its customers or the Canadian economy.
CN is urging the TCRC to resume negotiations immediately to reach a settlement. If that is not possible, CN believes the union should agree to submit issues in dispute to binding arbitration before the Nov. 28 strike deadline.
Such an approach is fully consistent with the TCRC's agreement to binding arbitration to end its strike at VIA Rail Canada Inc. in July 2009. In that dispute, the TCRC asked for two per cent wage increases - the same as CN's last offer to the union.
If the TCRC strikes CN, the company is committed to provide the best possible service to its customers in the circumstances.
On Nov. 23, 2009, CN notified the TCRC of its intention to implement only one work rule change to the collective agreements and increase wages by 1.5 per cent effective Nov. 28, 2009. CN decided to invoke these contractual changes to move the company forward after 14 months of bargaining with no resolution in sight. The TCRC's last contract with CN expired on Dec. 31, 2008.
This news release contains forward-looking statements. CN cautions that, by their nature, forward-looking statements involve risk, uncertainties and assumptions. Implicit in these statements, particularly in respect of long-term growth opportunities, is the Company's assumption that such growth opportunities are less affected by the current situation in the North American and global economies. The Company cautions that its assumptions may not materialize and that the current economic conditions render such assumptions, although reasonable at the time they were made, subject to greater uncertainty. The Company cautions that its results could differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause such differences include, but are not limited to, the effects of adverse general economic and business conditions, including the current deep recession in the North American economy and the global economic contraction in 2009, industry competition, inflation, currency and interest rate fluctuations, changes in fuel prices, legislative and/or regulatory developments, compliance with environmental laws and regulations, actions by regulators, various events which could disrupt operations, including natural events such as severe weather, droughts, floods and earthquakes, labor negotiations and disruptions, environmental claims, uncertainties of investigations, proceedings or other types of claims and litigation, risks and liabilities arising from derailments, and other risks detailed from time to time in reports filed by CN with securities regulators in Canada and the United States. Reference should be made to "Management's Discussion and Analysis" in CN's annual and interim reports, Annual Information Form and Form 40-F filed with Canadian and U.S. securities regulators, available on CN's website, for a summary of major risks.
CN assumes no obligation to update or revise forward-looking statements to reflect future events, changes in circumstances, or changes in beliefs, unless required by applicable laws. In the event CN does update any forward-looking statement, no inference should be made that CN will make additional updates with respect to that statement, related matters, or any other forward-looking statement.
CN - Canadian National Railway Company and its operating railway subsidiaries - spans Canada and mid-America, from the Atlantic and Pacific oceans to the Gulf of Mexico, serving the ports of Vancouver, Prince Rupert, B.C., Montreal, Halifax, New Orleans, and Mobile, Ala., and the key metropolitan areas of Toronto, Buffalo, Chicago, Detroit, Duluth, Minn./Superior, Wis., Green Bay, Wis., Minneapolis/St. Paul, Memphis, and Jackson, Miss., with connections to all points in North America. For more information on CN, visit the company's website at www.cn.ca.
For further information: For further information: Media: Mark Hallman, Director, Communications & Public Affairs, (905) 669-3384; Investors: Robert Noorigian, Vice-President, Investor Relations, (514) 399-0052