Haifa Stevedores Return to Work; Accept Compromise with Conditions

Port stevedores here, who have been conducting a slowdown for nearly three weeks, reducing their loading and unloading work by half, returned to work this morning on condition that they could appeal from the ruling of a special committee set up by Histadrut, Israel’s federation of labor, to deal with the grievances, if their “minimum” demands were not to be granted.

Under a compromise pact, the stevedores will receive a 10 percent wage increase now, while the Histadrut committee considers their other requests, including one calling for upgrading and another for higher pay for workers with seniority. During the slowdown action, the ship owners complained they had lost hundreds of thousands of dollars, while the harbor was tied up. At one time, last week, there were nearly 20 ships anchored in the harbor awaiting work by the stevedores.

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