WASHINGTON, December 5, 2012 – The National Retail Federation today issued the following statement from President and CEO Matthew Shay on the negotiated settlement between The International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 63 Office Clerical Unit and the Harbor Employers Association at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach:
“The retail community is pleased to see a settlement of the strike. We are happy both parties came together, with assistance from intermediaries, to reach a new contract agreement. The nation’s largest port facility is now re-opened and operating and will hopefully be able to quickly recover from the shutdown.
“Our attention now shifts to the East and Gulf Coast ports, where federal mediators have been locked in prolonged discussions with labor and management for the past two months.
“We urge the parties to reach a final agreement before their contract extension ends at the end of December. Retailers, manufacturers and the rest of the business community cannot afford another shutdown.
“Our economy cannot withstand another port disruption.”
As the world’s largest retail trade association and the voice of retail worldwide, NRF represents retailers of all types and sizes, including chain restaurants and industry partners, from the United States and more than 45 countries abroad. Retailers operate more than 3.6 million U.S. establishments that support one in four U.S. jobs – 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.5 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy. NRF’s Retail Means Jobs campaign emphasizes the economic importance of retail and encourages policymakers to support a Jobs, Innovation and Consumer Value Agenda aimed at boosting economic growth and job creation.