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.

News & Analysis

Ships at berth at the Port of Long Beach, such as the one pictured, are able to plug into shore-supplied power, which is known as cold-ironing, as part of the port's pollution reduction efforts.
25 Aug 2016
The congestion that crippled West Coast ports in 2015 temporarily derailed the progress in reducing pollution at the Port of Long Beach.
Long Beach dockworker
06 Nov 2014
Fearing that gridlock at the largest U.S. port complex is imminent, the Pacific Maritime Association today blasted the International Longshore and Warehouse Union for withholding skilled labor at Los Angeles-Long Beach.
04 Nov 2014
Shipper frustration with Los Angeles-Long Beach port congestion is rising, with importers and exporters complaining of added costs and making plans to divert cargo away from Southern California.
17 Oct 2014
An on-again, off-again dispute between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and ICTSI, operator of Terminal 6 at the Port of Portland, once again shut down the port’s only container terminal for two days this week.
09 Oct 2014
Dockworkers in Los Angeles-Long Beach are making the already terrible congestion problems at marine terminals insufferable by pulling trucks over and requiring inspections that reportedly go far beyond the normal safety procedures.
09 Oct 2014
Dragged-out negotiations for a new West Coast longshore contract are adding to congestion and delays at ports and threatening supply chains for holiday-season goods, the National Retailers Federation warned.

Commentary

Contract extension talks between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association must address productivity issues in a serious way so US West Coast ports get somewhere remotely close to the efficiency at other major ports in the world. 

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