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.

News & Analysis

A number of issues on both coasts stand in the way of early contract talks between dockworkers and employers that could usher in an unprecedented period of labor peace at U.S. ports.
10 Aug 2016
The International Longshoremen’s Association won't discuss a contract extension until disputes over the current contract are resolved.
New York crane operator
29 Jan 2013
Container ship lines serving East and Gulf Coast ports are urging customers to pick up import containers and return empty boxes before the International Longshoremen’s Association contract expires Feb. 6.
Crane operator in the Port of New York and New Jersey
28 Jan 2013
The International Longshoremen’s Association and United States Maritime Alliance resume contract negotiations Tuesday amid the renewed possibility of a work stoppage at East and Gulf Coast ports.
21 Jan 2013
Unions affiliated with International Transport Workers are showing support for their colleagues in the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, ahead of what could be a major labor showdown in the U.S. Pacific Northwest.
Maher Terminals, Port of New York and New Jersey
21 Jan 2013
The International Longshoremen’s Association and employers will resume bargaining Tuesday on New York-New Jersey port issues that may pose the toughest challenge to settlement of an East and Gulf Coast dockworker contract.
Container yard hustler at North Carolina Ports Authority
17 Jan 2013
A federal mediator said three days of bargaining on an East and Gulf Coast dockworker contract yielded progress and that the International Longshoremen’s Association and employers have agreed to continue negotiations.

Commentary

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.

Video

Stephen Knott, general vice president of the International Longshoremen's Association, discusses the union's concerns about the introduction of labor-saving technology at Global Terminal in Bayonne, N
Harold Daggett, new president of the International Longshoremen’s Association, comments on automation, container weights, organizing and cooperation with the ILWU.