Furloughed Members

Transportation carriers, especially rail carriers, often furlough workers to improve their economic returns, throwing families into turmoil when the paychecks stop and bringing excessive stress and hardship to our members.

When enduring a furlough, it is vitally important that SMART Transportation Division members keep their contact information up to date with both union and employer, including phone number, mailing address and email address. Your union will need your correct contact information to keep you informed of services, including support. Your employer will need this correct contact information to call you back to work. 

There are numerous ways to update your phone number or address with SMART TD. 

Locally: Get in touch with the Secretary of your local union.

Online: Via the SMART Member Portal

By phone: Call SMART TD headquarters at 216-228-9400 and follow the prompts for the Updating Department.

In addition to the loss of income, another major source of anxiety when enduring a furlough is the potential absence of health insurance coverage, especially if a family member has a medical condition needing treatment. Members should be aware that health care coverage benefits from their employer extend through the end of the fourth month after being furloughed. Here are some answers to questions regarding health coverage and furloughs.

Furloughed railroad members also may be eligible for unemployment benefits through the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB): https://rrb.gov/Benefits/UB9

Union Plus and AFL-CIO also are sources of information that can assist through times of hardship.

Union Plus hardship help page: (https://www.unionplus.org/benefits/hardship-help)

AFL-CIO publication: When the paycheck stops (PDF)

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Member Voices

Hear about the union directly from SMART members themselves.

Member Stories: Meet Carol Jones

Longtime Amtrak conductor Carol Jones — who is also a local chairperson with SMART TD Local 1361 out of New Haven, Conn. — shares her story of coming up in the transportation industry and working as a pioneering woman in the passenger rail sector.