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.
09 Apr 2015
The chief executives of the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach are looking beyond their current congestion problems to resume what they see as their ports’ rightful role as leaders of the U.S. port industry, and it will all be about infrastructure and processes.
08 Apr 2015
Hapag-Lloyd notified its Pacific Northwest customers on Tuesday that it has ended its service to Portland because of “schedule integrity” problems.
24 Mar 2015
If the leadership of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union is going to convince the union rank and file that the tentative contract agreement is a good deal for the general membership, the officers will have to fend off a concerted effort by militant members and retired members of the ILWU to jettison the deal.
Bobby Olvera
24 Mar 2015
International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 13 President Bobby Olvera told the Long Beach Harbor Commission that dockworkers are committed to clearing out the worst container backlog to hit the Southern California ports in more than a decade, and wants to see the reputation of the ports restored.
20 Mar 2015
Nike had a strong winter in North America thanks to robust consumer demand, but it would have had an even better one were it not for the West Coast labor standoff.

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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