Legislative Actions for Rail in the Public Interest

Solutionary Rail works in solidarity with labor and other stakeholders.  The week of Feb 12, 2024 is an important one in our Washington State Legislature; we hope you'll join us in taking action to support legislation that will impact workers, community safety, short line infrastructure, and passenger rail. Support HB-1839, HB-1548 and SB-5494.

THIS WEEK:

1. STAND WITH RAIL LABOR

Please take a few minutes and register your PRO support for these two rail labor related bills:

Smart Union TD has an Action Page that addresses both pieces of legislation HERE. 

a. House Bill 1839 - please let your Legislators know you Support this bill that will put a maximum limit on train lengths, an important safety and labor issue that also impacts passenger rail.  

ACTION STEP: Legislation is currently in the House Rules Committee.  Contact Committee members and your own legislators, asking them to take action in support of this bill.

Train length has become an urgent problem in terms of rail safety, labor conditions, and impacting passenger rail's on-time performance. This has cascading impacts. Please support this legislation that limits train length to a reasonable size. Thank you for your attention.

b. House Bill 1548 - Support this bill that guarantees (unpaid) family and sick leave for railroad workers.

ACTION STEP: Like HB1839, the legislation is currently in the House Rules Committee.  Contact Committee members and your own legislators, asking them to take action in support of railroad workers.

Stop railroad companies from disciplining rail workers for taking UNPAID time off work for illnesses and injuries of themselves and their family members and for taking UNPAID time off work to bereave the loss of loved ones. It is every workers right to have this support in the workplace and we must stand up to the Wall Street Class 1 Rail Companies who are mandating impossible working conditions.


2. STAND WITH SHORT LINE OPERATORS

Support short line rail in our state. SSB 5494 will provide incentives to improve short line freight railroad infrastructure; additionally, this bill is helpful in our work to provide transportation alternatives to farmers in Southeast Washington. Learn more about it HERE.

ACTION STEP: Please register a PRO Opinion on the legislation by Thursday at 4pm.

  • Click the first radio button for SSB 5494.  Scroll down and select, "I would like my position noted for the record."
  • For position, select PRO.

Short line railroad operators need modernization of Washington's short line railroads. This is critical for ensuring efficient, safe, and eco-friendly freight transportation that will help our State achieve its climate goals. This legislation will also help build a more resilient and accessible system for farmers shipping their grain to coastal ports.  Please support this legislation that will help build out needed rail infrastructure.  


3. SUPPORT COMMON SENSE RAIL SOLUTIONS

Support the Rail Can't Wait Six Legislative Priorities for 2024.  (Solutionary Rail is part of the Rail Can't Wait Campaign.)

ACTION STEP: Contact your legislators in the WA State House and Senate and ask them to prioritize these common sense transportation solutions. The more they hear from we the people, the more likely they are to pay attention to rail in the public interest. Download this PDF to share with them.

To send an email to the policymakers that represent you in Olympia, click on their name and send them a message. 

Thank you for advocating for rail solutions that will help our State meet its climate goals, support transportation and mobility justice, and strengthen resilient and cost effective freight transport systems.

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  • Amy Morrison
    published this page 2024-02-12 14:51:39 -0800
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