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.”
17 Oct 2013
A longshoremen’s union local and employer representatives plan to meet with an arbitrator on Oct. 18 to try to resolve a strike that idled public docks at the Port of Baltimore for a second day today.
Port of Baltimore cranes
17 Oct 2013
A longshoremen’s strike that has idled the Port of Baltimore continued into its second day today.
16 Oct 2013
The Port of Baltimore was closed today when International Longshoremen’s Association members went on strike following a breakdown in protracted contract negotiations with the Steamship Trade Association of Baltimore.
Port of Virginia
03 Sep 2013
International Longshoremen’s Association members in Hampton Roads voted 738-284 to ratify a six-year local contract, the ILA said. Dockworkers in the port had twice voted down previous proposals.
31 Aug 2013
International Longshoremen’s Association members ended a brief walkout at the Port of Charleston after employers obtained a temporary restraining order from a federal judge.


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.