The National Retail Federation Continues Awareness about Port Strikes

Coalition urges President Barack Obama to prevent pending East and Gulf Coast port strike

Washington, D.C.Dec. 20, 2012—This afternoon, a diverse coalition of over 100 national and state associations, organized and led by the National Retail Federation, sent a letter to President Barack Obama, advising its administration on the impact that the pending East Coast strikes would have on the economy and many within the supply chain.

More specifically, to “urge immediate action by your administration to ensure that a strike does not occur—when the current contract extension between the International Longshoremen’s Association and the United States Maritime Alliance Ltd.—expires on December 29, 2012.”

The coalition—which represents the breadth of the supply chain from auto makers, farmers, manufacturers and retailers—reiterated its call on the president “to take immediate action and use all of the options available to you, including the authority under the Taft-Hartley Act, to keep the parties at the negotiating table and avoid a coast wide port shutdown.”

The group said that failure to reach a contract agreement would result in a coast-wide shutdown at 14 containerized ports—from Maine to Texas—which would have “serious economy-wide impacts.”

Impacted ports would include Boston; New York and New Jersey; Delaware River [Philadelphia]; Baltimore; Hampton Roads, Va. [Norfolk]; Wilmington, N.C.; Charleston, S.C., Savannah, Ga.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Miami; Tampa, Fla.; Mobile, Ala.; New Orleans; and Houston.

Signatories to the letter included the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers; American Apparel & Footwear Association; American Farm Bureau Federation; National Association of Manufacturers; National Retail Federation; Toy Industry Association; and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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