Monday, December 24, 2012

Deadline: Clash at the Ports Today? Armed Guards on Stand By.


Merry Christmas everybody! The notorious longshoreman's union plans a strike if it gets locked out by port operators in Portland, Vancouver, Tacoma, Seattle, California and the East. Employers gave their 'last, best, final' offer recently declaring noon on Christmas Eve as the deadline for ILWU to take it or leave it. They've been negotiating for months and employers have declared an official impasse.

As the Zero's Rich Read points out here, the stakes are high:
Three fully crewed, non-union tugboats protected by armed guards stand by, prepared to keep grain ships docking. In a provocative move, a California company has moored the tugs on the Willamette River near longshore Local 8's Northwest Portland union hall.
Memories from Longview
This could get ugly. We could be looking at Longview or Occupy Ports all over again.

Read reports replacement workers are ready to hit the docks to replace striking workers. Since operators say they've given their 'last, best and final' offer and given the noon deadline, they are legally able to replace Longshore union workers.

According to Michelle Malkin, the East Coast port workers plan a strike:

Hope ILWU's Swearing Stevedore Wasn't a Negotiator
East Coast port workers have already green lighted a strike,
ILA President Harold Daggett won a unanimous green light earlier this month to call a strike if industry leaders don’t give in completely to the union’s demands. According to my sources, despite overwhelming industry concessions on wages and benefits, port watchers view the likelihood of a strike at “probably 70 to 85 percent now.”
At issue is the archaic way dock workers are paid for modernization techniques brought in during the 60's which have resulted in a bizarre and corrupt patronage system. The Longview EGT showdown was over more recent modernization at the grain terminal.

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