1:30pm | Talks between shipping companies and striking clerical workers at the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles resumed today, though both sides are reportedly frustrated at the lack of progress. Negotiators began another bargaining session at 1:00pm today.
Clerical workers have been on strike now for six days, though there has been no apparent effect on shipping traffic thus far.
The dispute comes over job security, as employees are worried that their positions could be outsourced and are asking for a guarantee that they are safe. Employers told the Associated Press that such a request isn't fair. From a story by Jacob Adelman:
The report also says that shipping traffic has not been affected because clerical work is normally done several days in advance, and that employers are striking just two of fourteen shipping companies. Union leaders say they have offered packages that eliminate pay raises for their employees as an olive branch, but employers say that the offer included major increases in health care packages.
"The union continues to press demands on who we hire and when we hire them, whether there is any need or not," Berry said.
The shippers are also seeking to use new computer programs allowing customers to access booking information, a move that the union has said would endanger jobs.
The AP also reports that under the expired contract, clerical workers received an average $96,900 salary along with full medical coverage, 21 paid holidays, 13 sick days and four weeks of vacation.
Disclosure: The Port of Long Beach is an advertiser with the LBPOST.com.