TheDetroitBureau.com reports 5,000 Canadian Teamster union members moved to strike against the Canadian Pacific Railroad after last-minute negotiations failed to reach a fruitful agreement. As a result Chrysler, General Motors, Ford, Honda and Toyota have all seen their vehicle shipments bottlenecked. The railroad company has closed a full 15,000 miles of track across both Canada and the U.S., and the Canadian government has already threatened take action to put an end to the standoff. Those tracks typically handle a large portion of vehicle commerce, including moving both complete cars and components to and from manufacturing facilities.

According to TDB, Canadian Pacific Railroad serves auto manufacturing facilities across Ontario and the U.S. Midwest, helping to link those plants with sister locations in Mexico. Chrysler says the company is currently investigating alternative shipping methods in the event the strike continues much longer. Honda, meanwhile, has said CR-V shipments have already been impacted by the issue.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 21 Comments
      Car Guy
      • 2 Years Ago
      Thank you union greed.
      Synthono
      • 2 Years Ago
      It's not "union greed" or even money, the two contentious issues in this strike are hours and plans to claw back pension benefits. The hours is a particularly bad one, they're planning on increasing the amount of time before a mandatory rest period to twelve hours. Conditions at CP are crap, I know a few people who have quit and taken a massive pay cut because they can't physically or mentally handle what is being thrown at them, and it's getting worse. Armchair commenters with an anti-union bias are going to come out in this, but this strike is justified due to poor conditions.
        SloopJohnB
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Synthono
        OH waaah waaah. Next thing you know they'll be demanding hand holders for track walkers in wheelchairs. Not every person is fit for every job and as they age out they should get out or get up rather than expect their noses to be blown for them. 12 hours in a basically featherbedded job? What, that's going to affect their beauty sleep? Poor conditions are a matter of discussion, to be sure. Let's have a full disclosure here.
          Daniel D
          • 2 Years Ago
          @SloopJohnB
          Hey SloopJohnB. Why not offer to take the place of all CP staff? Your up for the challenge apparently.
      drewbiewhan
      • 2 Years Ago
      Here's an idea, pay the damn workers more money!
        SloopJohnB
        • 2 Years Ago
        @drewbiewhan
        And the natural response to that is fire a few more workers and pay the rest more money. We've seen that in this recession although it's more like lay off workers and allow the rest to keep their jobs.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      fiveepointoh
      • 2 Years Ago
      strikes are so pointless. you lose so much money while on strike that any raise you do gain will not make you any more money in the long run anyways! .
        The_Mell
        • 2 Years Ago
        @fiveepointoh
        let us have a look at the other side: companies, strikes are so pointless. you lose so much money while on strike that any raise you do give will not make you any less money in the long run anyways! and then there are so many other things you can (or even should) strike for...
        SloopJohnB
        • 2 Years Ago
        @fiveepointoh
        I went through this argument in several business classes that used the various Teamsters and UAW strikes as case studies. On the whole, you're right...a strike almost never makes you whole although many UAW strikes clearly did...the workers turned into snowbirds every four years at the target company and went to Florida for a couple weeks, the company got time to fix/maintain plants, build up supply inventory or deplete sold car stocks, whatever. But the main point of the business case was that the threat of a strike often did the same thing as a strike but in order for the threat to work there often had to be a strike. As a general rule, the company ALSO lost profits that it never recouped as well as the increased costs engendered by the strike. So why do both sides instigate/tolerate a strike? It's just to show they can....and do. Then it's back to the bargaining table. The one exception is when a company is losing money by manufacturing/selling at such a cost that a strike actually saves them money. That generally works out for the company and badly for the workers, e.g., the GM bailout and subsequent labor renegotiations.
          rlog100
          • 2 Years Ago
          @SloopJohnB
          UAW strike historically had no negative competitive consequences before heavy importing. Basically whatever deal an autocompany agreeded to, became the foundation for the deal at the other two automakers. There was a bit of a pecking order. GM workers got a little more than Ford and Ford workers a little more than Chrysler. But overall, they all advanced lockstep. So here you have an autocompany that is hemmorraging losses. Today, with a full shutdown, probably a billion dollars every 2-3 days. A handful of months of that and you're out of business. And on other hand you concede, get profits go down, but your competition had the same disadvantage. This wage fixing on the union's part is something that is not normally permitted. However it is. So one hand, monumental losses and possibly bankruptcy in the short term vs. small but long term loss. Each time the choice is pretty obvious. Actually Wallstreet after seeing the losses rack up make the choice for them because their stock starts to tumble after the loss numbers start getting reported. Before then, Wallstreet is all about getting tough.
          • 2 Years Ago
          @SloopJohnB
          [blocked]
      G37S
      • 2 Years Ago
      I heard that the Government was considering enacting back-to-work legislation to end the strike.
        Pat
        • 2 Years Ago
        @G37S
        That's the Canadian government's approach to any and all labour conflicts!
          SloopJohnB
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Pat
          Not necessarily. There are Labour governments that are sympathetic to worker's conditions.
      thedriveatfive
      • 2 Years Ago
      Sure makes a good argument to assemble in the country of destination. Im sure onl models assembled in Canada will be affected.
        SloopJohnB
        • 2 Years Ago
        @thedriveatfive
        Lousy argument. Geographically the Canuck plants are literally across the river....geography, not nationality, tends to drive the plant locations. Also, there are national differences in UAW contracts.
      LiteNRG1
      • 2 Years Ago
      That should be good news for truck (lorry) drivers.
      J D
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hey Big Three: I can think of a lot of Americans who would appreciate getting their manufacturing jobs back, and unlike those Canadian scabs up north, they won't try to ruin your bottom line either.
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