PMA SCOLED ILWU FOR ALLEGED WORK SLOWDOWN AT LONG BEACH TERMINAL
Pacific Maritime Association President and Chief Executive Officer Joseph Miniace said the International Longshore and Warehouse Union was “playing with fire” when its workers allegedly initiated a work slowdown at the Stevedoring Services of America terminal in Long Beach Monday.
“If the union does not immediately return to work at full productivity levels, PMA will be forced to take defensive action,” Miniace said.
PMA, which represents the employers of dock labor on the West Coast, and the ILWU are negotiating a new labor contract. The previous contract expired on July 1.
“The PMA board stands united against this destructive and counterproductive behavior,” Miniace said. “We will not tolerate work slowdowns and selective strikes by the ILWU.”
“These actions are designed to build bargaining leverage for the union but the only thing they achieve is the possibility of economic disaster,” he added.
Miniace warned ILWU President James Spinosa in a letter that work slowdowns would break down the contract negotiation process.
The ILWU denies any organized slowdown in the Port of Long Beach.
“It’s a shortage of manning,” said Steve Stallone, an ILWU spokesman. “We just don’t have enough people to cover the jobs (at the SSA terminal). That in no way threatens the national economy.”