The International Longshore and Warehouse Union Canada is likely to urge its members to accept a new labor deal with their employer, the British Columbia Maritime Employers Association, this week, following talks today and tomorrow, according to Container Management magazine (subscription).
What’s happening: The deal is the same as the one that West Coast Canadian dockworkers rejected last week, and includes “a compounded wage increase of 19% over four years … not including benefits and pension.”
The background: Earlier this month, the dockworkers went on a nearly two-week-long strike over wages and benefits.
- Last week, after rejecting the proposed agreement with the BCMEA, they went on strike again—but the Canadian Industrial Relations Board called it off after a day and employees returned to their jobs.
- Voting by the ILWU on the latest proposed agreement is scheduled to start today and could last through the weekend before results are announced.
Why it’s important: Canadian dock-work stoppages have a serious effect on North American supply chains.
- “Ports in the Canadian West Coast have been badly impacted by the 13-day strike initiated at the beginning of July. … Data from the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade showed that over the 13-day strike, the union disrupted over CA$10bn (US$7.5bn) worth of trade,” according to Container Management.
- In the U.S., the impact is also significant. “Weekly rail trade data from the Association of American Railroads on the second full week of the first strike showed a decline of 36.2%,” CNBC reported last week. “The first week of the strike, there was a decline of 46.2% in U.S.-bound trade year-over-year.”