The International Longshoremen's Association Local 1982 tonight voted down a contract with Midwest Terminals of Toledo International.
Otis Brown, president of International Longshoremen’s Association Local 1982, said union members rejected the most recent offer.
Contract negotiations have been ongoing since Dec. 31.
“It was disapproved because of the changes that were made,” Mr. Brown said, citing that the contracts presented to the other two dock workers' unions, Teamsters Local 20 and the ILA Local 1768, were not the same as what was presented to his local's 45-member local. Mr. Brown did not release details of the contract.
Mr. Brown has cited racism against his predominantly minority local as a main reason why the company has settled contracts with Teamsters Local 20 and ILA Local 1768 but not with his local’s membership.
Local 1982 plans to meet with Midwest Terminals again this month. Mr. Brown said the local is “willing to go back to the table,” and he plans to contact the company this week. He was hopeful that another meeting could be arranged.
He said his members will not settle until they are presented with what they believe is a fair contract.
“Hopefully the company will come around and be fair in the negotiations,” Mr. Brown said. “All we're looking for is a fair and impartial contract like they've given to the others.”
Midwest Terminals president Alex Johnson previously said that the company had successfully negotiated three contracts with Local 1982 in the past, and that the local membership then "had a similar demographic profile as the current local has."
- Kelly McLendon