PMA accuses ILWU of causing slowdowns in Seattle, Tacoma

Both the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) and International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) issued conflicting statements yesterday regarding an alleged slow down by dock workers in the ports of Seattle and Tacoma.   The PMA alluded that the union was engaging in slowdown tactics at the terminals in order to put pressure on the ongoing negotiations and that productivity was being severely impacted.  The use of a so-called “slowdown” is a disputed, long-standing tactic by dock workers and has been closely monitored during the ongoing contract negotiations.  The ILWU responded with their own press release yesterday refuting the claims made by the PMA.

Terminals along the West Coast are suffering from severe congestions problems due to a variety of causes and it is feared that any slowdown in Seattle or Tacoma would spread to the terminals in Oakland, Los Angeles, and Long Beach, further disrupting operations during the traditional peak shipping season.  Adding to industry concerns, the ILWU-PMA talks, which have been ongoing since before the contract expired on July 1st, could be taking a negative turn and this leads to fears that a strike or lockout could occur.

We will continue to closely monitor the situation and advise you of any important updates.