SAVANNAH, G.A. – The International Longshoremen’s Association and the United States Maritime Alliance have reached a six-year agreement. ILA International President Harold Daggett said its the “best contract in the history of the ILA.”
In a video message to members Executive Vice President Dennis Daggett said, “What I love about this contract is that it’s not just a longshore contract or a clerks and checkers contract or a maintenance contract. “It’s a contract that benefits all members under the ILA umbrella.”
“Your president convinced management to invest in you rather than in automation and we can’t quantify the value of the protections we receive on this issue,” Dennis Daggett said of the negotiations led by his father. “Getting to this point took a lot of hard work on the part of ILA officers and wage scale delegates,” continued Dennis Daggett.
A section of the current master contract that addresses new technology has been replaced with new language that states that no fully automated terminals and no fully automated equipment will be implemented during the life of the six-year contract. Additionally, management and the union agree that no semi-automated equipment and no technology automation will be implemented until both parties agree to workforce protections and staffing levels.
Increases in initial container royalty distributions is addressed in the contract as well as wage and pension contribution increases. The union’s healthcare plan will have no reduction in benefits.
“This contract is one of the best we’ve had in the history of the ILA,” said Tim Mackey, president of Savannah’s ILA Local 1414. “It encompasses a lot of things that are important to us as workers. “Now we just have to finish up some cosmetic details and get it to our membership for a vote.”
The new contract must be ratified by ILA members at member ports from Maine to Texas and will replace the current contract that expires on September 30th this year.