9-13-22 - MCC Urges Congressional Action on Potential Rail Strike

On September 13th, the Michigan Chemistry Council urged members of Michigan's Congressional delegation to help resolve a potential breakdown to the rail network due to a labor strike. Please see below for a copy of the letter.

On behalf of the Michigan Chemistry Council, I am writing to express concern about the threat of increased rail service disruptions if the railroad industry and labor are not able to reach a contract agreement. Congress must act to avoid potentially devastating consequences to Michigan businesses and consumers.

Over the past few years, the quality and reliability of rail service has eroded significantly due to deep cuts to the freight rail network, which has prolonged the supply chain crisis and hurt many businesses. If railroads and rail workers fail to reach agreement on a new contract, a strike could begin as soon as September 16, shutting down freight rail service across the country. 

In advance of this new potential crisis, railroads are halting shipments of essential products, and rail customers are being forced to implement contingency plans to prepare for further disruptions.

Our companies support more than 80,000 Michigan jobs and generate $370 million in state and local taxes. 96% of all manufactured goods are directly touched by the business of chemistry, making our industry essential to every facet of Michigan’s economy.

Any further interruption in rail service to our members would have significant economic and societal consequences, including putting public health at risk. Water treatment facilities that rely on routine delivery of chlorine and other treatment chemicals would be at risk of service interruptions, impacting the quality of the water we drink and the wastewater we return to the environment.

A prolonged strike could create more supply chain issues including empty shelves in stores, temporary closures at factories, and higher prices of various consumer goods.

I urge you to support legislation to help both parties reach a mutually agreeable solution to resolve this situation and prevent a complete breakdown to the rail network.

John Dulmes, Executive Director