ILA Labor Negotiations

The International Longshoremen’s Association and its employers at U.S. East and Gulf Coast ports are discussing an early, long-term extension of their coastwide contract that expires Sept. 30, 2018. The goal: an agreement that spares cargo interests an experience such as the one they endured during the epic 2012-13 bargaining between the ILA and United States Maritime Alliance. Those negotiations yielded a six-year contract, but only after nearly a year of rocky negotiations and repeated strike threats.

Special Coverage

Union president Harold Daggett takes to Facebook in advance of February meetings.

News & Analysis

16 May 2017
“Bring your cargo, it’s going to be fine.”
Worker at port.
18 Dec 2012
Representatives of the International Longshoremen’s Association and United States Maritime Alliance resumed negotiations today...
17 Dec 2012
The National Retail Federation urged President Obama to “use all means necessary” to head off a threatened Maine-to-Texas
14 Dec 2012
The National Industrial Transportation League, the United States’ largest shipper organization, urged President Obama to
14 Dec 2012
Montreal’s Maritime Employers Association is conducting its own negotiations with ILA locals 375 and 1657 for renewal of the contract that expires on Dec. 31, but the contract likely would be extended if they don’t reach agreement by year-end.
14 Dec 2012
Striking port clerical workers had barely raised their picket signs at Los Angeles-Long Beach this month when shippers began clamoring for President Obama to use the Taft-Hartley Act to end the walkout.


Typically, once a U.S. longshore negotiation is settled, the affected ports revert to a state of normalcy despite whatever disruption occurred during the talks. U.S. West Coast negotiations over the past 20 years have never been without disruption but were always followed by near-normal operations that lasted in some cases for years. The six years leading up to the June 30, 2014, expiration of the recent agreement between waterfront employers and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union saw only sporadic disruption. But there is a difference between then and now: The current agreement reached on Feb. 20 failed to resolve all issues and one in particular — chassis maintenance — stands out as holding the potential for sparking further disruption and uncertainty for shippers.