OTTAWA — The federal government will force striking workers at Canadian Pacific Railway back to work with fast-track legislation aimed at restoring rail service by Thursday, Labour Minister Lisa Raitt said on Monday.
The government introduced the legislation in the House of Commons on Monday to end a work stoppage by 4,800 locomotive engineers, conductors and rail traffic controllers at CP Rail, Canada’s second-biggest railway.
“From past precedent, we’d like CP Rail continuing to roll on Thursday. But we’d like it sooner, quite frankly, and that’s the message today,” Raitt said in Ottawa, flanked by Canada’s ministers of transport, energy, agriculture and industry.
The unionized employees have been on strike since May 23 over pension issues and work rules, shutting down CP Rail freight operations across Canada for nearly a week. The latest round of mediated talks between the company and workers broke down at the weekend.
The government fears the strike could hurt an economy still recovering from recession. Raitt has said a strike would cost $540 million in economic activity each week.
Read more at The Vancouver Sun