In today’s News and Commentary, the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and port officials negotiate, and the WGA strike continues.
Over the weekend, the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) continued to push for a fair and equitable contract with the Pacific Maritime Association (PMA). Noting that PMA members and terminal operators made a record $510 billion during the pandemic while ILWU workers put their lives on the line to maintain service, workers across West Coast ports are pushing for a contract that passes on to them some of those unprecedented economic gains. The PMA, meanwhile, claims that the ILWU has “effectively shut down” ports in Los Angeles, Long Beach, and Oakland—which manage approximately 40 percent of all U.S. cargo imports from Asia—as negotiations have stalled. Echoing the talking points deployed during last year’s railway strike, the PMA has called upon the White House to intervene, citing possible economic losses in the magnitude of $500 million a day.
As the WGA strike enters its sixth week, the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) has reached a tentative agreement with the Directors Guild of America (DGA) “confirming that A.I. is not a person and that generative A.I. cannot replace the duties performed by members.” Notably, the WGA has also sought from the AMPTP—and thus far been denied—this same guarantee.