A message from Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa

You've got to fight for your rights!

Since voting to merge the BLE with the Teamsters 18 months ago, our union has made great strides towards strengthening rail labor. One example is the Rail Labor Bargaining Coalition (RLBC), a coalition comprised of the BLET, Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employes and five other rail unions.

The RLBC has already been meeting with the rail carriers and has submitted a strong proposal that will curb the crew reductions the carriers have forced upon us and the very long hours that you face every day. Part of the reason you voted to merge with us was to achieve a safer workplace and I can assure you we are fighting for your right to that everyday.

We are aggressively lobbying U.S. congressmen on your behalf, too. In past years, the rail carriers such as Union Pacific, Norfolk Southern and others have had the upper hand with Congress. This caused the regulatory body of the railroads, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), to listen more to rail carrier lobbyists than to the people who work on the rails. But we are working to change that dynamic.

Since the beginning of this year we have held several lobby days in Washington, D.C., where rank and file members and state legislative representatives from both the BLET, the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employes and our government affairs department have met with Congressmen and their staff to explain the need for Amtrak funding and the affects of lax rail regulatory standards. The halls of Capitol Hill are very familiar to the Teamsters Union and we are here to represent you.

By standing together we are growing rail labor strength. A safe workplace is your right as a working man or woman in America. We will fight for your right to it!

Stay United, Stay Strong!


Jim Hoffa

IBT General President



© 2005 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen