Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: ilwu


PORT: There are two sides to this dispute

Re: “West Coast port crisis needs president’s intervention” (editorial, 2-13).

Any bargaining over contested points of view has two sides. The current dispute between the Pacific Maritime Association and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union is no different.

In the most current escalation, the employers are choosing not to use labor at whatever pace that labor performs. Not calling night shifts has nothing to do with fair negotiations, especially when “leaks” of various rates of pay, potential annual earnings and benefits are being tossed out into public discussion as a smoke screen. The PMA has chosen to not use labor

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PORT: The bigger picture must be considered

When two parties sit down to negotiate, it is assumed they will bargain in good faith. Good faith requires compromise. Compromise demands that each come off their original positions.

In the negotiations between the Pacific Maritime Association and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, no hard information has been released by either party, so why is it assumed that all the fault lies with the ILWU?

We can speculate that the fully automated terminals in Los Angeles/Long Beach are the problem. I have no inside information, but I understand the long-term impact on the workforce, the communities, and possibly on ports as

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PORT: There are two sides to this standoff

I am responding to the letter (TNT, 11-18) accusing longshoreman of being greedy and insensitive by slowing down production.

The International Longshore and Warehouse Union is currently in negotiations with the Pacific Maritime Association on a new contract. Negotiation, by definition, assumes both sides are being forthcoming.

The union is operating under the old contract rather than shutting the coast down completely, and many of the issues have already been settled. Rather than cast all of the stones at the longshoremen, we should remember there are two sides to this issue.

(Pratt is a retired Longshore Local 23 worker.)


UNION: Wages reflect value labor brings

As one who has spent 35 years in the stevedoring business, managing ILWU labor on behalf of shippers, I was disappointed by the thinness of economic rationale in your editorial, “Strange sympathy for Longshore lawlessness” (TNT, 9-9).

I doubt you meant it as such, but your pause – “hold your breath” – prior to detailing ILWU earnings leans a bit to the snide side when you overlook the fact that longshoring is both dangerous work and essentially day labor. Members work at the whim of ship schedules and must take work as it comes or not at all. To

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UNIONS: Plenty would work those jobs for less

I read the paper Friday, and my heart weeps for the poor, unfairly treated members of the ILWU, the UFCW and the Tacoma Education Association.

How dare a company open up shop and not offer the job to the members of the longshore workers’ union? It is appalling that a company would make any decisions without consulting the ILWU first; it’s only the proper thing to do.

I feel such agony for the men and women working in our ports, making those measly wages and benefits. It’s so unfair. Now it seems that members have taken to

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