Tentative agreement includes scheduling, paid sick leave

ATLANTA and INDEPENDENCE, OH, (April 28, 2023) — Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE:NSC) and the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers — Transportation Division (SMART-TD) announced Friday that they have reached a ground-breaking, system-wide tentative agreement. The agreement would offer a comprehensive suite of new benefits and workplace enhancements to improve quality of life for Norfolk Southern’s conductors.

“This agreement underscores the progress we can make when SMART-TD and Norfolk Southern come together to improve the lives and workplace experience of our hard-working members,” said Jeremy Ferguson, president of SMART-TD. “I want to thank Norfolk Southern for their partnership, and most importantly, our tireless SMART-TD leaders – Jim Ball, Tommy Gholson, David Phillips, Drew Evans, Brian Sharkey, and Jason Roberts – for working collaboratively to reach this extremely positive outcome for Norfolk Southern conductors.”

The new agreement contains meaningful improvements that will transform the conductor experience, including:

  • Technology-driven enhancements that offer all conductors scheduled days off and greater certainty around their weekly assignments.
  • Tools and work-rule changes that provide greater transparency and flexibility to enjoy their vacation and other paid time off.
  • Higher reimbursement for meals when away from home, and additional compensation when working weekends and spending time away from home.
  • Up to seven days of paid sick leave, including five new paid sick days and the option to use two days of existing leave, to care for their personal well-being.

“I have a deep appreciation and respect for the contributions that my craft colleagues make to our company, our customers, and the U.S. economy,” said Alan H. Shaw, president and CEO of Norfolk Southern. “Coming out of national negotiations, we committed to taking a comprehensive look at quality of life at Norfolk Southern. With this agreement, we are leading the industry’s efforts to provide more predictable work and greater support for the wellbeing of our craft railroaders.”

“I am incredibly proud of the work we’ve done with our labor partners at SMART-TD to reach this landmark deal,” said Wai Wong, vice president, Labor Relations at Norfolk Southern. “This agreement is the culmination of many honest, open discussions with our General Chairmen about our employees’ perspectives and priorities. I look forward to building on the foundation of trust we’ve laid as we continue working together to improve quality of life for our dedicated railroaders.”

The tentative agreement, which is subject to member ratification, also satisfies the parties’ obligation to discuss scheduling enhancements and other related items that were part of last year’s national agreements. The agreement would go beyond those obligations, however, underscoring Norfolk Southern’s and SMART-TD’s mutual commitment to holistically improve quality of life and enhance their shared team’s ability to safely deliver reliable and resilient service as a customer-centric, operations-driven organization.


About Norfolk Southern

Since 1827, Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE: NSC) and its predecessor companies have safely moved the goods and materials that drive the U.S. economy. Today, it operates a customer-centric and operations-driven freight transportation network. Committed to furthering sustainability, Norfolk Southern helps its customers avoid 15 million tons of yearly carbon emissions by shipping via rail. Its dedicated team members deliver more than 7 million carloads annually, from agriculture to consumer goods, and is the largest rail shipper of auto products and metals in North America. Norfolk Southern also has the most extensive intermodal network in the eastern U.S., serving a majority of the country’s population and manufacturing base, with connections to every major container port on the Atlantic coast as well as the Gulf of Mexico and Great Lakes. Learn more by visiting www.NorfolkSouthern.com.


SMART Transportation Division is comprised of approximately 125,000 active and retired members who work in a variety of different crafts in the transportation industry. These crafts include employees on every Class I railroad, Amtrak, many shortline railroads, bus and mass transit employees and airport personnel. More information about the union is available at www.smart-union.org.