Monday, October 26, 2015

Canadian Train Employees Framed

Will the framed Quebec, Canadian rail workers be Canada’s Haymarket Martyrs? At this time the Canadians government rail bosses are responsible for the 2013 derailment that killed 47 people, but the rail bosses are tying to throw the workers under the train. The workers are controller Richard Labrie, company manager Jean DeMeitre, and train engineer Thomas Harding, who all face charges as the bosses try to shift blame unto the these workers. Harding and Labrie are both Local 1976 Unite Steelworkers union members. They each face 47 counts of criminal negligence causing the 47 deaths. Conviction could result in life imprisonment. Minor former company official DeMaitre faces the same charges. This is to divert attention from the federal court in Quebec, they have approved the rail company to run trains with a crew of one. For safety reasons, there should be a four-person crew. Also, the rail companies have refused to replaced rusted out culverts under the tracks--as a cost saving measure. The railroad catastrophe of July 6, 2013, in Lac-Megantic was the result of several breaches and negligence by the MMA company, related to non-rigorous surveillance by Transport Canada relative to the application of its rail safety management policy in Canada. The resolution says. It points to lack of government oversight of the rail company, the excessively worn tracks, the fact that the railroad owner, Central Maine and Quebec Railroad, has made few serious and thorough repairs and the refusal of Transport Canada authorities to enact any new requirements for the rail bosses to carry out preventive maintenance and immediate repairs. This is the same type of response that the U.S. rail bosses have and are doing. They will not do anything until forced to and when things happen they will throw the toilers under the train, as well, which does nothing to help the train safety. This type of mentality has to change and then maybe a two country strike is in order to get the attention of all. The irony of a strike is that the same tactic that the railroads are using are essentially blackmailing Congress, threatening to stop running freight and passenger trains as soon as next month unless they get three more years to install positive train control systems and two more years after to test them. So maybe the trains in both countries should stop running until things are fixed so more people aren’t killed. It is up to the governments to put citizens first and greedy corporations last for a change.