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ILA Willing To Extend Strike Deadline

October 7, 1987

BALTIMORE (AP) _ The International Longshoremen’s Association is willing to extend its strike deadline from Nov. 14 to Dec. 14 in order to give management time to come up with alternatives to current work rules for handling cargo containers, union president John Bowers said.

″If sincere and productive negotiations continue over the next several weeks,″ the union would be willing to extend the deadline, Bowers said Tuesday.

The union imposed the strike deadline in September to pressure management in East Coast and Gulf of Mexico ports to come up with alternatives to the 50- mile rule.

The rule, part of ILA’s master contract for almost two decades, prohibits use of non-union labor to load or unload most shipping containers within 50 miles of an ILA port.

After the Federal Maritime Commission ruled the 50-mile rule illegal, the ILA asserted its right to reopen negotiations.

Bowers said he is confident the courts will overturn the maritime commission ruling but said he wants to find an alternative to the rule because it has not served its purpose of preserving work for members.

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