BLET serves Section 6 Notices

The National Division of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen provided its General Committees of Adjustment with its uniform national Section 6 notices on December 16 in the first step of beginning the next round of collective bargaining.

It is anticipated that each General Committee will promptly serve these notices, along with their individual notices, on the appropriate carrier representative.

The BLET National Division is also working with seven other rail unions to negotiate as the Rail Labor Bargaining Coalition (RLBC) on common issues. However, the RLBC has not yet been able to finalize a joint proposal, so the BLET served its individual Section 6 notices at this time and will also serve the RLBC Notice when it is completed.

Plans regarding the Section 6 Notices were discussed with BLET General Chairmen at a meeting in Cleveland on November 17.

Provided to the General Committees were the uniform national Section 6 notices, identified as BLET-A (wage, rules and working conditions) and BLET-B (health and welfare).

These approved notices contain common issues to be considered during this wage/rules movement. General Committees of Adjustment that have issues not covered by the "common" notice will formulate their own notices, which will be served in conjunction with the "common issues" that were provided by the National Division and any other items approved by their Committee(s).

The uniform national Section 6 notice covers a multitude of issues related to pay and working conditions. The notice seeks a 7 percent annual wage increase; a shift differential of 25 percent when required to work between the hours of 6 p.m. and 6 a.m. and on weekends and holidays; elimination of entry rates and the two-tier pay system; a certification allowance of $25 per start or tour of duty worked for locomotive engineers; guaranteed extra boards; job security provisions; climate controls within locomotive cabs; and additional personal leave days and an improved sick leave plan.

The BLET National Division also provided a courtesy copy of the Section 6 Notices to the National Carriers Conference Committee, which bargains on behalf of Class 1 railroads Burlington Northern Santa Fe, CSX Transportation, Kansas City Southern and Union Pacific, in addition to numerous other non-Class 1 lines.

The Health & Welfare Notice covers the national vision plan, dental plan, medical plan, and other related items, and is usually handled jointly by all of rail labor under the CRLO.

It is expected that negotiations will commence shortly after the beginning of the year. National negotiations will be handled by members of the BLET's Wage & Rules Committee, headed up by BLET National President Don Hahs.

The Rail Labor Bargaining Coalition is expected to submit its joint Section 6 Notices after the first of the year, on or around January 3, 2005.



© 2004 Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen