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·         Contract talks near for thousands of West Coast dockworkers

·         West Coast Dockworkers, Firms Vow to Avoid Upheaval Amid Contract Talks

 

 

Contract talks near for thousands of West Coast dockworkers

Contract negotiations between 22,000 workers at 29 West Coast ports and representatives of shipping companies will begin next week with automation and its impact on jobs emerging as a major point of contention amid supply chain issues

 

By John Antczak, Associated Press

via ABC News - May 6, 2022

 

LOS ANGELES -- Contract negotiations between 22,000 workers at 29 West Coast ports and representatives of shipping companies will begin next week with automation and its impact on jobs emerging as a major point of contention amid supply chain issues.

 

Talks between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association will take place against the backdrop of pandemic safety issues, surging imports that left backlogs of ships anchored offshore, and declining exports.

 

The current contract expires July 1.

 

Negotiations are expected to extend past that date, Pacific Maritime Association President and CEO Jim McKenna said Friday during an online briefing hosted by Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka.

 

“I think everybody is optimistic going into this one that we're gonna get where we need,” McKenna said. “Whether we go past July 1 or not is not the issue. It's just we need to stay at the table and get an agreement without causing any further disruptions.”

 

But with contract talks looming, the ILWU has reacted strongly to the release early this month of a report commissioned by the Pacific Maritime Association that strongly supported automated cargo handling and found that it did not hurt jobs.

 

“It’s obvious that the PMA is issuing its report as posturing as we go into negotiations," union official Frank Ponce De Leon said in a statement Friday...

 

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https://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/contract-talks-thousands-west-coast-dockworkers-84553890

 

 

West Coast Dockworkers, Firms Vow to Avoid Upheaval Amid Contract Talks

 

By Augusta Saraiva, Bloomberg

via gCaptain - May 7, 2022

 

(Bloomberg) –Labor negotiations at 29 West Coast ports are set to start next week with both sides saying they want to avoid further upheaval in supply chains that haven’t fully recovered.

 

Talks to hammer out a new labor contract for 22,000 West Coast dockworkers are scheduled to start May 12, ahead of the current contract’s expiration on July 1. Jim McKenna, president of the Pacific Maritime Association, which serves as a broker for about 70 carriers and terminal operators, said he’s entering negotiations with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union in the “spirit of cooperation.”

 

“Hopefully everybody is focused to the point that there will be no further disruption to a fragile supply chain,” McKenna said Friday during a virtual press briefing with Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka.

 

The ILWU has also expressed hope that a deal could be reached. “The men and women of the ILWU are looking forward to the opportunity to meet with the employers and seek a contract that honors, respects, and protects good American jobs,” ILWU International President Willie Adams said in a statement Friday.

 

Breakdowns in prior negotiations between the union and the PMA had proved crippling for shipments to the western seaboard, which is stoking fears of a repeat just as dockyards work to clear backlogs of goods brought on by pandemic disruptions and historic consumer demand for goods...

 

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https://gcaptain.com/west-coast-dockworkers-firms-vow-to-avoid-upheaval-amid-contract-talks/