Talks between the International Longshoremen's Association (ILA) and U.S. Maritime Alliance (USMX) on a new labor contract will continue this week with assistance from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS).
In a statement issued Sunday, FMCS Director George H. Cohen said the ILA and USMX had met for five days, including Saturday, and "are making good progress on a number of difficult issues at the full committee and subcommittee levels.
“As is our custom and practice, due to the sensitive nature of these high profile negotiations, we will have no further comment on the schedule for the negotiations, their location, or the substance of what takes place during those negotiations,” FMCS said.
A contract for longshoremen working at ports along the East and Gulf coast ports that was to expire at the end of September was extended for 90 days through Dec. 29 after the union and USMX agreed to continue talks under the auspices of the FMCS.
USMX represents carriers, direct employers such as stevedoring companies, and port associations in the talks. - Chris Dupin