ILWU, PMA reach tentative West Coast dockers contract
Officials from the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association announced a tentative West Coast dockworker labor agreement Monday, after more than five months of negotiations.
Details of the new six-year pact, which must be ratified by the ILWU membership and the 71 shipping industry firms that make up the PMA, were not released.
Negotiators met throughout the weekend to hammer out the final details of the new deal, which covers wages, pensions, health benefits and safety rules for more than 25,000 ILWU dockworkers at 29 West Coast ports.
In light of the agreement, both sides agreed to extend the previous contract during the ratification process and resume normal port operations. The previous six-year contract expired July 1 and for two weeks ILWU members have been engaged in slowdown tactics at ports in Southern California and the Bay Area.
ILWU President Bob McEllrath and PMA President Jim McKenna shook hands over the tentative contract, saying the agreement meets the needs of both workers and the industry. Both agreed not to release details of the plan before the agreement is ratified.
The ILWU's 100-delegate caucus has until Aug. 18, when the contract extension runs out, to review the proposed contract and recommend a vote to the general membership.