Union issues will impact all industries, NRF warns

Union issues will impact all industries, NRF warns

Union issues will impact all industries, NRF warns

Regarding the ongoing rail strike, a representative of the retail industry before Congress says Americans are not out of the woods yet.

Of the 12 different unions that represent railroad workers, seven have agreed to a new contract as part of a tentative deal the White House announced in September. Two unions have rejected the agreement, and three others are counting votes now -- a process that should wrap up next week. The sticking points appear to involve things like working conditions and compensation.

"The new dates now are December 4 or December 8, depending upon the votes from BLET (Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers and Trainmen) and SMART (Sheet Metal, Air, Rail, Transportation)," Jon Gold, vice president of supply chain and customs policy at the National Retail Federation (NRF), recently relayed in a webinar hosted by Inside Sources.

To put it another way, he explained that a massive rail strike could happen just before Christmas, and it will impact everyone.

Gold, Jonathan (NRF) Gold

"This is going to impact industries all across the board," he asserted. "This is going to impact workers whether you're unionized or non-unionized, because if you're not able to get your … finished goods or inputs to production, you could have factories that are shutting down."

Farmers, Gold said, would also "lose out on being able to sell products overseas," and families could be put in danger because they would lose access to things like chlorine to put into clean drinking water systems.

"So, this is going to be a significant impact across the country," Gold reiterated.