Preliminary Agreement With West Coast Labor

The joint statement of the two sides was simple and lacked detail: “After a marathon weekend bargaining session, leaders from the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) announced a preliminary agreement on terms for a new six year contract covering more than 25,000 dockworkers at 29 West Coast ports. The leaders shook hands in San Francisco over the proposed agreement on Monday [July 28, 2008].”

The agreement is subject to ratification by the ILWU and PMA membership. In the interim, the ILWU and PMA have agreed to extend the previous agreement and resume normal port operations.

ILWU President Bob McEllrath and PMA President Jim McKenna said the proposed agreement meets the needs of both workers and the industry. It allows West Coast ports to be competitive and provides the good jobs that workers and communities need.

The parties have agreed not to discuss details of the agreement until the ILWU and PMA leadership teams have communicated with their respective membership.

The proposed agreement will first be reviewed by elected Longshore Caucus delegates who will meet in San Francisco beginning the week of August 18.

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