According to multiple sources, the International Longshoremen's Association (ILA) has announced plans to conduct a daylong march on Washington, D.C., impacting operations at U.S. East Coast and Gulf Coast ports. As detailed in a press release published by The Maritime Executive, the ILA is seeking to protest the loss of longtime longshore jobs as well as overregulation, singling out the South Carolina Ports Authority and the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor for their hiring practices. A proposed date for the march is expected to be announced next week (Feb. 27 to Mar. 3).
In response, the United States Maritime Alliance (USMX), the employer group that contracts with the ILA, characterized the news as "disturbing." The USMX added: "The master contract between the ILA and the USMX forbids any unilateral work stoppage by the ILA for any reason. If the ILA engages in any unilateral walkout, USMX will enforce the contractual rights of its members to the fullest."
Meanwhile, shipper organizations such as the Agriculture Transportation Coalition, National Industrial Transportation League and National Retail Federation are urging the ILA to reconsider, citing the potential economic impact on commerce and ripple effect on the integrity of the global supply chain.
SPARX logistics will continue to monitor this situation and keep our customer apprised of the latest developments. If you have questions or concerns related to specific shipments, please feel free to contact your SPARX representative.