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In Union! Teaching Labor Relations to Maritime Industry Professionals Christopher Clott California Maritime Academy http://www.youtube.com/watch?v =BCVHB7RlEAU Who Are These Guys? Unions and the Shipping Industry “It’s at the bargaining table we’ll have an opportunity to address some of the things that add to the cost of doing business in the port” – Joseph Curto, President of the New York Shipping Association. Journal of Commerce, Nov. 10, 2010 Introduction Understanding the role of seagoing and waterfront unions is an essential aspect of the business of shipping. Union representation in the United States has shrunk to 11.9% of the U.S. workforce. Half of this is in the public sector. Within the maritime industry, the influence of unions is still profound. How can maritime union issues be taught effectively within maritime institutions? If an understanding of unions is as crucial to managers as an understanding of global supply chains, what types of skills and knowledge regarding unions will be needed going forward? Labor Relations in Context How Unions Operate – Majority of students will have little practical experience – Wagner Act & National Labor Relations Board – Collective Bargaining contracts and Negotiation Impact of Deregulation on Unions Right to Work Laws Strikes and work stoppages (e.g. Philadelphia & Los Angeles 2010; 2002 work slowdown). Federal and Regional Legislation Taft-Hartley Act – 1947 restriction of labor rights. Stop strikes that “imperil the national health or safety”. Landrum-Griffin Act – 1959 curb abuses of union leadership. Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor – 1953. aggressive investigations recently. Benefits of Union Membership? To owners and management- steady supply of skilled labor. For union members- protection Old agreements and new agreements- retooled agreements for new realities. Pensions and benefits are under attack. The Major Maritime Unions/Bargaining Groups American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations (A.F.L.-C.I.O.) www.afl-cio.org Change to Win Federation www.changetowin.org International Longshoremen’s Association (ILA) www.ilaunion.org United States Maritime Alliance, LTD. (USMX) www.usmx.com/html/about/USMX/Usmx.htm The Major Maritime Unions (cont.) International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) www.ilwu.org Pacific Maritime Association (PMA) www.pmanet.org International Brotherhood of Teamsters- Ports Division (Teamsters) www.teamster.org/content/port-division Marine Transport Workers Industrial Union 510- Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) www.iww.org/unions/dept500/iu510/ The Major Maritime Unions (cont.) Longshore Workers’ Coalition (LWC) www.lwcjustice.com Marine Engineers Beneficial Association (MEBA) www.d1meba.org International Association of Masters Mates & Pilots (MM&P) www.bridgedeck.org American Maritime Officers (AMO) www.amo-union.org Seafarers International Union of North America (SIU) www.seafarers.org The Major Maritime Unions (cont.) Marine Firemen's Union (MFOW) www.mfoww.org Sailors Union of the Pacific (SUP) www.sailors.org International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) www.itfglobal.org International Labour Organization (ILO) www.ilo.org The Historical Record Harry Bridges (ILWU)- from “Bloody Thursday” to the M&M agreement Teddy Gleason (ILA)- from the Brooklyn docks to White House conferences Paul Hall- Founder of the SIU- won gains in wages and benefits Joseph Curran- NMU founder introduced hiring halls and combated discrimination Jones Act Involves cabotage (coastal shipping) that requires all goods transported by water between U.S. ports be carried in ships that are American built, owned and staffed. Jones Act created far reaching benefits for sailors and their respective unions. Critics of the Jones Act argue that it drives up costs for the transport of cargo between U.S. ports as the restrictions result in higher costs for ship owners. Supporters of the Act state that it benefits the U.S. on security grounds, economically through employment, and in wartime if necessary. How the Union Works Contract Negotiations- Bargaining Issues- Macro and Micro Training Programs Local Disputes can become national disputes Buying labor peace? Getting Into the Union Applicants, Casuals and Union Members Seniority Hiring Halls Job Postings, Bribes and Connections Pensions and Benefits The Future of Maritime Unions Maritime Unions face continued globalization and automation of the waterfront. Intermodal moves reduce the amount of work offered. Flags of convenience and competing port alternatives. Strong anti-union sectors of the industry. Reach of the unions does not extend beyond the sea and docks. Why Unions Remain Influential The Jones Act The Maritime Security Program Effective Congressional Lobbying Monopolistic collective bargaining agreements Laws that need an organized labor presence Conclusion It is vital that maritime students understand the role of unions within the greater maritime industry. An explanation of labor relations and an appreciation for the continued role of unions needs to be addressed. The overriding goal should be to provide objective information for future employment in the maritime industry.
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