Six hours of last-ditch negotiations have yielded a tentative agreement for the Port of Portland and a Longshore union that represents security guards at some marine terminals. This averts a strike that was scheduled to bring work to a halt Sunday.
The 25 guards represented by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 28 do security. They're also responsible for guiding ships into berths, and managing other logistics at the Port's busy terminals 2, 4 and 6. Angie Dahlgren led the union's negotiating team.
Dahlgren "There will be no picketing. We are very happy to say we do not have to show up and do that. Life will go on as normal."
The Port has assured the union that security duties will be performed by the union's members, not by outside workers hired by individual carriers. In turn, the union has pledged that Local 28 workers will stay on the job, regardless of any changes that may come up in agreements with the carriers at all three terminals. The Port's negotiations continue with several other Longshore groups that do different kinds of work at Portland and other regional ports.
At least one container ship, from Honda, has diverted because of the uncertainty.
Assuming Local 28 members ratify this deal, the agreement stands until the summer of 2015.
Copyright 2012 Northwest Public Radio