A strike by clerical workers at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach continued Thurdsay, shutting down nearly all cargo movements into and out of the United States’ busiest port complexes.
According to port officials, about 70 clerical workers from the International Longshore and Warehouse Union were picketing at seven of eight Los Angeles terminals and at least three of six Long Beach terminals as of Wednesday night.
“Basically, we’re not moving cargo in and out here,” Los Angeles port spokesman Phillip Sanfield said.
Contract negotiations broke down Monday between the Office Clerical Unit of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 63 and a group of 14 shippers represented by the Los Angeles/Long Beach Harbor Employers Association. Clerical workers from Local 63 have been working without a contract for nearly 30 months and allege that jobs have been shipped out of state and overseas.
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As of Thursday morning, at least 18 ships docked and inside the adjacent harbors were not being serviced, a port spokesman said.
Officials from the International Longshore and Warehouse Union contend that the ports remain open for commerce at greater than 25% capacity.
Ray Familathe, the ILWU’s International Vice President for the Mainland, said, “I’m proud of the sacrifice that is being made by the men and women of Locals 13, 63 and 94 as they stand in solidarity with OCU and against the outsourcing of the good jobs that this community needs. And, despite the employer propaganda to the contrary, the ports are still moving cargo.”