Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

December 02, 2009 16:55 ET

Statement by the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Labour

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Dec. 2, 2009) - I am pleased to inform you that CN Rail and the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference have just signed an agreement that will bring an end to the current strike affecting rail service.

Under the terms of this agreement, the company will not proceed with work rule changes announced last week, the union will end its strike, and the parties will finalize a new collective agreement with the assistance of federal mediators and an arbitrator whom I will appoint.

This agreement was reached through intense bargaining between the two sides over the last 24 hours, with the assistance of the Labour Program.

Restoring full rail service quickly is critical to the national economy at this sensitive time. Canada is still at the early stages of a recovery from the global economic downturn and could not afford slowdowns and stoppages in such a critical component of the national infrastructure.

That is why the Government moved quickly to introduce back-to-work legislation on Monday. Our preference is always to have the two sides reach an agreement and we are pleased they did so in this situation. They will now be able to move forward and, working together, create a constructive labour relations environment within CN.

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