District Lodge 19

where it all begin

 PDGC Mike Perry

The Corner Office

  • President, J. Michael Perry

The Presidents Report July 2021

 

District Lodge 19 Members:

As our country is getting back to some normalcy, our employment for our members continues to suffer. 

Recently UP announced plans to recall forty plus (40+) of our members, however Norfolk Southern announced a furlough of thirty-one (31) of our members at the NS Juanita Shop in Altoona Pa.  We were encouraged and hope that the UP recalls would develop a trend in recalling our furloughed members.  But then NS furloughed again.  These are trying times for our furloughed members and our employed members.  Class One Freight Railroads continue to make up employment shortage by working our members overtime, and in a lot of cases forcing out members to work overtime.  All the General Chairmen are putting pressure on our Class One Railroads to have sufficient help to do the work by recalling Machinists back to work.

On a good note, as of writing this report Amtrak has announced the hiring of Machinists at several of their locations. (You can go to our web site or Facebook page to see these locations.)  Long Island Railroad recently hire eleven (11) new Machinists and Metro North hired five (5) new Machinists.  BNSF is looking to hire eight (8) Machinists in Lincoln and Havelock.  This is very welcoming news.  

As you know, the CN and CP are competing to acquire and merge with the KCS Railroad.  Both the CP and CN have contacted District 19 for support of their interest in this merger.  In the best interest of the District I have taken the stance that District 19 will remain neutral in this matter.   We have recently learned that there is a third party interested in acquiring KCS.  However, currently the third party is remaining anonymous.  We have hired the law firm of Guerrier, Bartos and Roma to represent and protect our interest in this merger.  I will keep you updated on this merger as it progresses.

Through this pandemic we have negotiated and ratified several agreements.  We are presently continuing negotiating with other Railroads including the National Agreement.  You can find updates on these contract negotiations in the District’s 2021 2nd Quarter Report.

Early this year there was a dispute concerning application of the CSX Employee Protection Agreement (EPA) to CSX furloughed members.  I am proud to announce that General Chairman Jason Gibbs took this dispute to an Exhibited Public Law Board, and He prevailed.  This award gives our CSX furloughed members their entitled EPA protection benefits.  This award has the potential pay out of more than 2.9 million, plus benefits.  You will also find more claims and discipline cases that were resolved in our favor in this Quarterly Report.  Your General Chairmen have been and continue to work hard for you.

I am glad to announce that our General Chairmen are traveling again and back to visiting members at workplaces and Local Lodge meetings. We have missed visiting with the membership and excited about getting back in the field.

In closing I want to wish all of you and your families a safe and happy rest of the summer. 

In Solidarity,

J. Michael Perry