Current Edition

President’s Column- Big Win, and More Progress

Our industry scored an important victory in late July, when United States Senators from both sides of the aisle stood up for the Jones Act. Specifically, they turned back two ill-conceived amendments in the Coast Guard Authorization Act that would have weakened America’s freight cabotage law. The resounding, bipartisan votes in favor of fully maintaining…

Pro-Maritime Bill Reintroduced

U.S. Rep. John Garamendi (D-California) and U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Mississippi) in July reintroduced the Energizing American Shipbuilding Act in their respective halls of Congress. The legislation, strongly backed by the SIU, would support U.S. shipbuilding by stipulating that a portion of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and crude oil exports be transported on U.S.-built, U.S.-crewed…

‘Jones Act is About Protecting America’

A former U.S. congressman recently wrote a powerful defense of America’s freight cabotage law. Ernest Istook, a former Republican member of the United States House of Representatives from Oklahoma’s 5th Congressional District, posted an op-ed headlined “The Jones Act is About Protecting America.” Currently a political science professor, Istook plainly spelled out how the century-old…

Union-Contracted NY Waterway Christens Ferry

SIU-contracted NY Waterway has added to its fleet of safe, reliable passenger ferries. The company on July 24 hosted a ceremony in Weehawken, New Jersey, where Lt. Gov. Sheila Y. Oliver christened the Susan B. Anthony. The boat joins NY Waterway’s fleet of three-dozen vessels. SIU Patrolman Ray Henderson attended the gathering, which he described…

Senator Portman Named Lakes Legislator of 2019

A United States senator recently garnered a prestigious maritime award. U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) early last month was named the 2019 Great Lakes Legislator of the Year by the largest labor/management coalition representing shipping on America’s fourth sea coast. The award is presented annually by the Great Lakes…

Communications Workers President Emeritus Bahr Passes Away at 93

The last member of the AFL-CIO Executive Council to have served during World War II passed away July 30. Morton Bahr, president emeritus of the Communications Workers of America (CWA), was a shipboard radio operator during the war before he came ashore to begin a career that culminated in…

Bosuns Find a Home with SIU

Members of the union’s newest class of recertified bosuns have diverse backgrounds, but they share a strongly held belief in the attractive career opportunities available with the SIU. That message came through time after time, often poignantly, when 10 Seafarers graduated from the recertification course Aug. 5 in Piney Point, Maryland. In keeping with tradition,…

‘A Tacoma Staple’ Seafarers Participate in Annual Philanthropic Project

SIU members in the Pacific Northwest show no signs of letting up in their efforts to give back to the community. Most recently, SIU personnel teamed up for the union’s annual participation in Paint Tacoma-Pierce Beautiful, a regional philanthropic project that began in 1985. The union has been active with the program (typically referred to…

Major Upgrades Completed in Piney Point

The Seafarers-affiliated Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education (PHC) recently completed yet another major upgrade to the school’s facilities. The newly upgraded engineering shop features state-of-the-art trainer systems, real-world equipment and new lab environments that will give students the best opportunity for learning the various aspect of the engine department in a safe,…

Culinary 2.0 Available at PHC

As previously reported, the SIU-affiliated Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education continues to offer Culinary 2.0 classes designed to help students boost their skills while complying with a new rule that takes effect next year. Completing the coursework also is intended to aid individual shipping opportunities. Shipping Rule 5.A.(6), which will go into…

Great Lakes Towing Celebrates 120 Years

Seafarers and SIU officials recently helped celebrate two milestones with a longtime employer of union boatmen. The Great Lakes Towing Company on July 22 hosted a dual celebration in Cleveland – recognizing the organization’s 120th anniversary and also christening the new tugboat Michigan. Crew members didn’t stay long, but that was for a good reason:…