Toy Association Signs Coalition Letter Urging White House to Avoid Rail Strike

toy-fair-boothOctober 28, 2022 | The Toy Association signed a National Retail Federation-led coalition letter requesting President Biden and the White House to continue working with railroad unions to avoid a strike in mid-November. The Association joined 321 other local, state, and federal trade associations that signed onto the letter, which was shared with the administration, key government officials, and Congress October 27.

Six of the 12 rail unions have ratified their agreements with the railroads, however, two unions have rejected the White House-brokered deal. On October 26, the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen (BRS) joined the Brotherhood of Maintenance of Way Employees Division of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (BMWED) — the third-largest rail union — in voting against ratifying the tentative agreement.

“As we’re getting closer to peak holiday shopping season, it’s critical for the White House to continue urging all parties to remain in negotiations and prevent a strike next month,” said Ed Desmond, executive vice president of global government & regulatory affairs at The Toy Association. “The consumer products industry across all categories cannot afford any disruptions at this point.”

Votes from the two largest unions — the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen (BLET) and the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers (SMART-TD) — are expected to finish in the coming weeks.

The Toy Association’s Global Government & Regulatory Affairs team is engaged on the issue and is continually assessing potential member impacts from the situation. Members are encouraged to bookmark The Toy Association’s Shipping Crisis Resource Center for the latest updates.