Market Matters Blog
Katie Micik DTN Markets Editor

Wednesday 02/27/13

PNW Labor Drama Takes a Turn

A fractured alliance among grain groups in the Pacific Northwest lead to divergent outcomes on Wednesday: some longshoremen got a new contract, others got locked out.

Temco, Cargill and CHS's joint venture, announced today they reached a five-year agreement with the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, while United Grain Corp locked out ILWU labor, accusing a local union leader of sabotaging operations.

Months of tense silence around the labor talks exploded into finger pointing today. United Grain's announced it determined that the employee who shoved a 2-foot metal pipe into a conveyor and damaged a gear box was a local union leader. They fired the employee and locked out the union.

"Deliberate attempts by an ILWU leader to damage equipment, disrupt operations and put co-workers at risk cannot be tolerated," United Grain CEO Gary Schuld said, according to the Associate Press. They estimate the unnamed employee caused about $100,000 of damage and are cooperating with law enforcement.

Meanwhile, the ILWU is accusing United Grain of making up the story in order to lock out workers.

"Mitsui-United Grain has fabricated a story as an excuse to do what they've wanted to do all along, which is to lock workers out instead of reach a fair agreement with them," ILWU spokeswoman Jennifer Sargent said in a statement. Japanese conglomerate Mitsui & Co. owns United Grain.

And the Oregonian reports that Sargent also suggested that United Grain timed its lockout to the announcement of Temco's agreement.

For more, I'd recommend the Oregonian, and you can find the story here: http://www.oregonlive.com/…

Posted at 4:12PM CST 02/27/13 by Katie Micik
Post a Blog Comment:
Your Comment:
DTN reserves the right to delete comments posted to any of our blogs and forums, for reasons including profanity, libel, irrelevant personal attacks and advertisements.
Blog Home Pages
March  2015
S M T W T F S
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31            
Subscribe to Market Matters Blog RSS
Recent Blog Posts
  • West Coast Port Tension Still Simmering
  • Overheard at NGFA
  • Ice in Upper Mississippi River Melting; Ice Jams a Danger
  • STB Wants Weekly Railroad Service Reports to Become Permanent
  • Great Lakes Nearly 88% Covered in Ice
  • Canadian National Railroad Reaches Last Minute Deal With Unifor
  • White House Sending U.S. Labor Secretary Perez to Referee Port Disputes
  • "Do or Die" for West Coast Labor Talks
  • A Pensive Moment in the History of Pit Trade
  • Labor Dispute Gets Meaty
  • Industry Facing Shortage Up to 30,000 Drivers
  • West Coast Ports Suffering Slowdowns, Work Stoppages
  • Proposal Would Make Weekly Reporting Permanent
  • Railroads Getting Better Grades for Service
  • Railroads Pick Up Steam
  • Railroads Performing Better Due to Mild Weather, More Locomotives
  • Informa: Beans Acres Exceed Corn Acres
  • Logistic, PNW Labor Issues Hurting Business
  • Milder Weather, Lower Freight Volumes Allow Railroads to Boost Performance
  • Everyone Needs a (Marketing) Code They Can Live By