The National Retail Federation today issued the following statement from President and CEO Matthew Shay following the White House’s call for immediate congressional intervention to avoid a rail strike and subsequent shut down of the U.S. freight rail system. The directive comes as the cooling off period expires Dec. 8 and railroads begin to suspend operations ahead of a labor strike.
“The freight rail system is an integral part of America’s transportation system, moving cargo to communities in every corner of the country every day. Millions of Americans depend on smooth and stable rail operations to safely transport consumer goods, food and other essential items.
“A rail strike, coupled with historically high levels of inflation, could wreak financial havoc and inflict catastrophic harm to American businesses, workers, consumers and the U.S. economy. We are in peak holiday shopping season, and it is essential that retailers and other businesses are able to rely on these vital supply chain partners.
“Retailers echo President Biden’s call for Congress to take immediate action to avert a rail strike and implement the tentative agreement brokered between the labor unions and freight railroads earlier this year.”
This week, NRF relaunched a grassroots campaign to encourage Congress to quickly pass legislation in advance of a strike and ensure continued operations.