The Port of Vancouver is abandoning tugboat workers.
ILWU Local 400 members have been working on tugboats at the Port of Vancouver for decades, some for generations. With their decades of experience, they know these waters better than anyone. But now, the Port of Vancouver is awarding contracts to the operator with the lowest rate—instead of the most experienced.
The Port is a federal Agency and should not be run like a private business. The Port’s actions are creating a downward spiral in the tugboat industry, encouraging lower salaries and inferior benefits. This is leaving hardworking, experienced sailors struggling to put food on table in the most expensive city in Canada. It’s robbing them of the future they deserve.
We’re told the Port is good for Vancouver and Canada, but it’s sinking the futures of our tugboat workers and their families. These workers made the Port into what it is today. We have to fight back. The Port of Vancouver must change the way it awards contracts. All companies bidding to work in the Port of Vancouver must treat their workers fairly and ensure they are working under Local Industry Standards, so every worker can support their families and afford to live in their local community.
ILWU Local 400 compared its industry standard Seaspan ULC collective agreement against another collective agreement at one of the direct competitors in the Port of Vancouver. This direct competitor was able to aggressively outbid the ILWU Local 400 employer for Tug Basin Contracts awarded by the Port of Vancouver. The result is the report below, showing the direct competitor’s agreement is inferior to ILWU Local 400’s agreement based on nearly all metrics.