Shipping container trucks sit at the Long Beach Seaport in California on November 29 waiting for the ILWU strike to be called off.
US workers at the two largest seaports have been striking for the past six days demanding better pay and job security.
Clerical workers at the seaports of Los Angeles and Long Beach in California started picketing at the ports on Tuesday demanding a 2.5 percent income raise and job security as the workers have been without contract since July of 2010 and there are fears that their positions will be outsourced internationally.
“These are powerful multinational corporations who aren’t respecting the local communities,” said ILWU International Vice President Ray Familathe, and he added, “These guys can outsource a good paying job to Taipei with the push of a button, and seem to care less how it impacts a family living in the Harbor area.”
The 800-member International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) Local 63 Office Clerical Unit is behind the strike, which has stopped 10 of the 14 cargo container terminals at a cost of about USD 1 billion every day in cargo value, forfeited worker pay and missing revenue for truckers and other businesses.
With the support of the 10,000 members from ILWU dockworkers, the two seaports have come to a standstill.
So far, nine ships have stayed offshore unable to unload and instead taken Oakland, California, Mexico and Panama Canal as its unloading destination, said Exchange Executive Director Dick McKenna.
Economists say that the two ports in California are directly responsible for about 595,000 jobs in southern California and indirectly support about 660,000 jobs.”