Feds set to legislate CN employees back to work

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OTTAWA, Ont. — The federal government is poised to bring an end to the CN strike by legislating striking employees back to work.

“Employers and many groups said they would like to see our government acting,” Labour Minister Jean-Pierre Blackburn told the Canadian Press last night. “The health of our economy is very important. We saw what happened in February when … about $1 billion of our exports we lost. Now it’s time to act.”

Its not yet known when the legislation would take effect. The Conservatives already drafted back to work legislation in February when CN employees first walked off the job. However, a tentative agreement was reached before it was enacted.

CN is appealing to the union to negotiate regional settlements. Workers in some parts of the country have refused to picket.

UTU vice-president, John Armstrong, called back to work legislation a special gift to CN. He said striking union members have caused a slowdown of freight traffic on CN lines.

— With files from the Canadian Press

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