ILA Negotiations

Over the past year we have heard a lot about the International Longshoreman’s Association and how its members were threatening to strike until the management could come up with a better contract. This greatly affects logistics and shipping. Back in September the deadline was coming in quickly and both sides decided to extend their contract for an additional 90 days until an agreement could be made that the two sides could live with. At this point we are coming in to around half way through that extension and an agreement has still not been reached.

This agreement is now more important than ever since we are still recovering from Hurricane Sandy and many shipping companies are still not back on track completely.  If negotiations have not resolved themselves and we have not completely recovered from Sandy by the time the 90-day extension is up, the results could be even more catastrophic than Sandy. Of course there will be more preparation time and a much greater understanding of how shipping containers will need to move and the logistics involved so that will be handled. The biggest problems will be with getting the cargo to its destinations without affecting the companies who are shipping.  It seems those are the people that will be most hurt by a strike. As it is right now, the ILA seems to be holding out on the same items as they were before. They are looking to keep their overtime pay and not allow caps on container bonuses. The extension of the contract concludes in the last days of the year. Hopefully by then both sides will be looking to avoid another hit to East Coast shipping and will come to terms before the close of negotiations on December 29th.