Congressman Lieu Urges PMA to work with ILWU to Put Negotiations Ahead of Slowdowns

January 16, 2015
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Congressman Ted Lieu (D-Los Angeles) issued the following statement today regarding the ongoing West Coast ports contract negotiations between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and the Pacific Merchant Association (PMA):

Our ports are the economic lifeblood of Southern California. Many businesses are impacted by the safety of our ports and the speed in which goods pass through them on their way in and out of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

The sooner that the ILWU and PMA can resolve their seven month long negotiations over a contract that expired in July of 2014, the sooner that our businesses and consumers can get the products and goods sitting in our ports.

Like Representatives Janice Hahn and Alan Lowenthal, I too am disappointed to hear that PMA may not be doing its part to ensure that business in the port continues as usual during these negotiations.

I urge PMA to put the businesses and working people of the region first, and work with ILWU to negotiate a new contract quickly.  I also urge PMA to do all it can to ensure that shifts continue around the clock to ensure that the goods arriving in our ports get to market as quickly as possible.  

Eliminating or reducing night shifts just as our economy is starting to perk up will only serve to reverse economic growth, increase congestion and reduce income for hundreds of dock workers and their families.  Southern California needs working ports.  I urge the parties to redouble their efforts and commit to working out their differences for the sake of the entire region.”

Congressman Lieu represents the cities of Malibu, Santa Monica, Calabasas, Agoura Hills, Beverly Hills, as well as the beach cities and Palos Verdes peninsula and the City of Los Angeles, including the neighborhoods of San Pedro, Pacific Palisades, Venice, Westwood, Beverly-Fairfax, Bel Air, Brentwood and Hancock Park.