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

Both sides say they're still interested in an early deal, but talk of a 10-year contract has cooled.

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.
15 Jan 2013
The International Longshoremen’s Association and United States Maritime Alliance held a full day of contract negotiations
ILA dockworkers in Jacksonville
14 Jan 2013
International Longshoremen’s Association negotiators apparently plan to stay longer at this week’s negotiations on a coastwide contract than they did last week when they cut short bargaining on New York-New Jersey local issues.
11 Jan 2013
Hapag-Lloyd has revised the application date of the congestion surcharge that it plans to apply in the event of an International Longshoremen’s Association strike.
Port of New York and New Jersey container operation
11 Jan 2013
The threat of a strike by the International Longshoremen’s Association had a widely divergent impact on cargo volumes at the five major East Coast container ports as two separate contract deadlines loomed in the last half of 2012, first on Sept. 30 and then by extension to Dec. 29.
Dockworkers in the Port of Philadelphia
11 Jan 2013
The International Longshoremen’s Association and United States Maritime Alliance plan to meet next Tuesday to resume federally mediated negotiations on a dockworker contract covering East and Gulf Coast ports.

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.