West Coast seaport talks resuming after hiatus, rallies

Jan 23, 2015 5:35 PM by News Staff

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Labor strife at seaports along the West Coast prompted thousands of dockworkers to rally against employers they say are trying to exploit a crisis of cargo congestion at harbors that handle about $1 trillion worth of goods annually.

While labor contract negotiators took the day off Thursday, port police estimated that 6,000 people took part in the rally in Los Angeles and Long Beach. Hundreds more rallied in Tacoma, Washington.

Contract talks were expected to resume Friday.

Earlier this month a federal mediator intervened in contract bargaining that began eight months ago but by fall had deteriorated into a blame game as goods languished on docks.

Longshoremen have been working without a contract since the previous one expired in July.

Employers started scaling back work crews this month, focusing on clearing the backlog from dockside yards.

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved


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