West Coast Labor Disputes

West Coast Labor Disputes

Relations between members of the International Longshoremen and Warehouse Union and waterfront employers on the U.S. West Coast have heated up over the past couple years, with protests and other actions in the Pacific Northwest and at ports in California.

The two parties are currently in negotiations for a new contract to replace the one slated to expire on June 30, 2014. For our continuing coverage of the negotiations, visit our ILWU Labor Negotiations page.

Special Coverage

Negotiations are underway for a new contract between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and employers represented by the Pacific Maritime Association. This JOC resource provides answers to common questions regarding the negotiations and their potential impact.

News & Analysis

Weekly wrap-up for Nov. 22
22 Nov 2014
Another week of the top stories on JOC.com focusing on the crisis-level congestion plaguing U.S. West Coast ports, although one story on Horizon Lines slipped into the Top 10.
Weekly wrap-up for July 12, 2014
12 Jul 2014
The International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association surprised watchers by announcing a 72-hour hiatus in their negotiations so that the union could deal with unrelated talks in the Pacific Northwest, and by extending the expired coastwide contract during the suspension of negotiations.
Sisyphus
11 Jul 2014
Events this past week demonstrate that the Teamsters union remains dead serious about organizing harbor truck drivers, but also highlight the uphill battle the union faces.
10 Jul 2014
The Teamsters union today promised to turn up the heat on trucking companies and marine terminals in Los Angeles-Long Beach harbor, although their efforts did not affect cargo-handling and gate operations in the nation’s largest port complex.
09 Jul 2014
In the article titled “Teamsters initiate labor action at LA-Long Beach in midst of longshore talks,” published on July 6, a quote drawn from a tweet was misattributed to a longshoremen.

Commentary

As of today, July 30, there is no U.S. West Coast longshore agreement in place, a month after the previous six-year pact expired. In any contract year, the time between expiration and agreement is especially volatile, because the risk of cargo-disrupting labor actions is at its highest. And the risk of disruption isn't diminishing.