An agreement was announced today to remedy, on an interim basis, the current jurisdictional dispute at the Terminal 6 container facility at the Port of Portland.
Terminal operator ICTSI Oregon, Inc., the Port of Portland and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) agreed that until such time as the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) rules on the jurisdictional dispute in question, the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU Local 8) may perform the disputed work historically performed by Port employees represented by the IBEW.
“We are optimistic that this represents a positive first step in resolving the ongoing issues that have taken place at the terminal,” said Sam Ruda, chief commercial officer for the Port of Portland.
As part of the interim agreement, IBEW electricians have agreed to stand down and avoid any disputes with the ILWU at the terminal while the issue of jurisdiction is considered by the National Labor Relations Board. The Port has committed to assign other work to its IBEW employees so that they do not suffer any economic consequences due to the lost work assignments.
In addition to the announcement of an interim agreement for settling the disputed refrigerated container monitoring and plugging/unplugging work, the Federal Judge issued a temporary restraining order (TRO) in response to a request filed by the NLRB to address work stoppages and slowdowns at Terminal 6.
“We are highly sensitive to the negative impacts this situation was having on shippers and businesses based in the state as well as in the region that depend on Terminal 6 for access to and from international markets,” said Ruda. “The container terminal is core to our mission, and finding a near-term fix and longer-term solution to this work dispute is critical for the community we serve.”
The Port acknowledges both the cooperation and leadership of the IBEW in seeking to find immediate and long-term solutions to this labor dispute.
A containership operated by Hamburg, Germany-based Hapag-Lloyd will call Terminal 6 on July 4. The Port anticipates a successful call and expects smooth operational performance while the ship is at berth.