Labor negotiations start at this time between the Pacific Maritime Affiliation and the Worldwide Longshore and Warehouse Union.
The contract talks, which begin Tuesday, happen in San Francisco on behalf of twenty-two,000 dockworkers at 29 West Coast ports, together with the nation’s two busiest ports — the Port of LA and the Port of Lengthy Seaside. The ILWU’s present bargaining settlement expires on July 1.
The negotiations will probably be particularly delicate this 12 months as a result of the U.S. continues to expertise historic provide chain disruptions from the pandemic, together with extraordinary cargo quantity from pent-up demand. Over the last labor negotiations in 2002, the PMA locked out dockworkers at ports from San Diego to Seattle for 10 days, accusing them of taking a part of a slowdown that amounted to a strike in all however identify.
Automation was one of many greatest sticking factors within the 2002 negotiations, and each side have the difficulty at prime of thoughts.
Jim McKenna, president and CEO of PMA — which represents employers who function marine terminals and delivery traces, says they’re dedicated to negotiating a contract with out disruption.
“Any disruption could be debilitating to the U.S. financial system. We and the ILWU want to remain on the desk and discount, with none impacts on West Coast marine terminals, McKenna mentioned.
In an open letter launched Friday, ILWU Worldwide President Willie Adams mentioned the union is looking for “a contract that honors, respects and protects good American jobs and U.S. importers and exporters, whereas reflecting the arduous work they’ve been doing not solely all through COVID however in our 88-year historical past on the ports.