Train dispatchers ratify Class I railroad contract agreement


American Train Dispatchers Association becomes fourth union to approve contract

Dispatchers at BNSF Railway’s Network Operations Center in Fort Worth were among those who approved the new contract on Oct. 4. BNSF-Railway

WASHINGTON — Train dispatchers today became the fourth union to ratify their contractual agreement with Class I Railroads.

The American Train Dispatchers Association, which represents 1,500 dispatchers, voted in favor of the deal by a margin of 64% to 36%, the union said in a statement.

The deal follows recommendations from the Presidential Emergency Council, which include a 24% salary increase over the five-year period from 2020 to 2024 – with a 14.1% salary increase effective immediately – and five annual lump sum payments of $1,000.

The agreement covers dispatchers who work for the Belt Railway of Chicago, BNSF Railway, Conrail, CSX Transportation, Indiana Harbor Belt, Kansas City Southern, Norfolk Southern, Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis and Wisconsin Central, the union said.

Unions representing carmen, clerks and electricians previously ratified their agreements with the railroads represented by the National Carriers Conference Committee.

Eight unions have yet to ratify their tentative agreements with the railways. The counting of votes for all unions – including the two largest, the SMART-TD union which represents conductors and the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Officers – should be completed no later than November 20, according to the National Railroad Labor Conference.


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