Many essential workers in the pandemic tired of unpredictable, inflexible work schedules.
They're tired of being penalized for taking days off when they're sick or tending to a family emergency. They want a better quality of life.
By contract negotiations, they made their voices heard, threatening a strike that could have brought trains to a halt nationwide on Friday.
Early Thursday morning, after 20 hours of negotiations, the White House announced a tentative agreement had been reached.
Freight railroads and the unions representing more than 100,000 rail workers had been negotiating a contract for several years.
President Biden recommended a compromise over the summer that would give workers a 24% increase in wages.
Both the unions and the railroad companies essentially agreed to the board's economic proposals.
But until early Thursday, there remained one major sticking point: a workplace attendance policy that the unions call draconian.
The unions had sought a change to the policy to ensure that workers can take time off to tend to medical needs when necessary, without fear of discipline.
A spokesperson for the Labor Department said it "balances the needs of workers, businesses, and our nation's economy."