Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy

Latest Episodes

Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Make Me Smart with Kai and Molly
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy
Marketplace Morning Report
Download
HTML Embed
HTML EMBED
Click to Copy

Strike could shut down East Coast ports

Stacey Vanek Smith Dec 21, 2012
Share Now on:
HTML EMBED:
COPY
Birds fly over a port in New Jersey on October 31, 2012 in New York City.
Allison Joyce/Getty Images

The Longshoremen’s Union is in heated contract negotiations with 14 ports along the East Coast and Gulf Coast. If an agreement isn’t reached by December 30th, it could mean a strike.

At issue are the bonuses longshoremen get based on the amount of cargo they unload. U.S. port operators want to cap those bonuses — which often top $10,000 a year.

“We are looking at a shipping cliff if they don’t settle,” says Harley Shaiken, a labor economist at the University of California Berkeley.

He says nearly half of the cargo shipped to and from the U.S. goes through these ports. “It has a much wider set of economic implications,” says Shaiken. “You’re talking about a lot of stores without things to sell and a lot of factories that aren’t able to export.”

A map of the biggest ports in the U.S., including many on the Eastern seaboard.

But unions are under pressure not to give too much these days says Gary Chaison, professor of labor relations at Clark University.

“The union movement has just done well in an election,” he says, “but in hard times as we’re facing now, the union still has to prove that it’s an effective representative.”

Just weeks ago striking clerks shut down ports in Los Angeles and Long Beach for eight days. Berekely’s Harley Shaiken says their union managed to wrangle a favorable deal.

 

If you’re a member of your local public radio station, we thank you — because your support helps those stations keep programs like Marketplace on the air.  But for Marketplace to continue to grow, we need additional investment from those who care most about what we do: superfans like you.

Your donation — as little as $5 — helps us create more content that matters to you and your community, and to reach more people where they are – whether that’s radio, podcasts or online.

When you contribute directly to Marketplace, you become a partner in that mission: someone who understands that when we all get smarter, everybody wins.

Make a good investment!

Looking for a great deal?
Get ALL THREE of our new thank-you gifts when you donate $120.

This is a limited time offer – so act soon!