Wheelhouse Weekly – April 28, 2005

April 28th 2005



– Bridging the Information Gap With E-News You Can Use –

Volume 9 . . . . . Number 17 . . . . April 28, 2005




Did you miss a week? Back editions of the Wheelhouse Weekly are available in the section.


Earlier this week, a hearing on Patriot’s Motion for a Preliminary Injunction against the turnover of the LMSRs was held as scheduled. In attendance were Don Marcus, MM&P Vice President Pacific Ports; Sandy Jones, Patriot Executive Vice President; Tim Gill, Patriot General Counsel; Patriot’s attorneys from Winston & Strawn; Duane Beeson, attorney representing MM&P & SUP; Peter Saltzman, representing MFOW; Dave Connolly, SUP VP; Jeff Walsh, SUP attorney; and Tony Poplawski, MFOW President.

The Government side had six lawyers attending, including an attorney representing AMSEA. The hearing took more than two and a-half-hours. The court acknowledged how important and complicated the case is. The hearing resulted in an order by the judge for the submission of two more briefs on technical legal issues by close of business this Friday, April 29.

Patriot anticipates that it will receive a ruling from the court on the Preliminary Injunction itself early next week. While this continuation of the hearing is a disappointment, the hearing is underway and there is no reason to not anticipate an expedited ruling in the early part of next week.

The hearing itself was conducted in a businesslike manner with both sides delivering oral arguments in support of their previously submitted record. The court demonstrated that it was knowledgeable concerning the issues of the case and the rule of law concerning it. The judge challenged both sides frequently on the substance of their arguments and demanded in depth analysis on several points including the evaluation criteria, key personnel, technical proposals and past performance.

Patriot Executive VP Sandy Jones said that while this further delay in a ruling is somewhat frustrating, he remained optimistic that Patriot will prevail in this Motion and there will be no further LMSR turnovers. He reminded everyone that it must be understood that this is just a Motion to stop the turnover of the SHUGHART, SEAY & MENDONCA.

If Patriot is successful in this Motion, the company must proceed to win the case itself. It will be a long difficult road, but one that Mr. Jones believes well worth the effort and expense. As Mr. Jones has asked MM&P members on these vessels many times in the last nine months, “stand fast and keep the faith! Your continued loyalty, support and professionalism is crucial to our success in this endeavor to keep the business and our jobs!”


The Masters, Mates and Pilots is pleased to announce that the Union will be celebrating its 125th Anniversary with a three hours cruise on the Bay Lady of Baltimore on May 24 this year. This event will be attended by members, Members of Congress, other trade union officials (both retired and active), employer representatives, and other guests who have been friends of the Masters, Mates and Pilots through the years. We are optimistic that this event will kick off the second 125 years of progress for the Masters, Mates and Pilots.



MM&P will have a booth at the Union Industries Show being held April 29-May 2 at Portland’s Oregon Convention Center.
MM&P’s Richard Plant, Director of Special Projects, will be manning the booth. United Inland Group-Pacific Maritime Region members as well as all MM&P members in the area are encouraged to visit the show and check out the MM&P booth. Local Union members are also encouraged to assist in manning the booth if they have time. Over $300,000 in free prizes will be given away during the show.

Just what is the Union Industries Show? It is North America’s only all-union product and skills exposition. For four days, virtually everything union men and women make or do will be on display, admission free, for the public to touch, see and sample. “The AFL-CIO Union-Industries Show has everything from union-trained seeing-eye dogs to union- made wedding cakes, motorcycles and blue jeans, all under one roof,” said Charles Mercer, president of the Union Label and Service Trades Department, AFL-CIO, which produces and manages the event.

In addition to the MM&P booth, more than 300 exhibits covering an area equal to four football fields will bring to life the show’s theme, “Good Jobs Build Strong Communities.” Show hours are 1100 to 1900 hrs. More info on the show is available at



A local Baltimore law firm, Ashhcroft & Gerel, is once again sponsoring two $2500-one-time-only scholarships for the immediate family members of any Baltimore area AFL-CIO affiliated union. One scholarship is for undergraduate students and the other is for graduate students. All MM&P members in good standing, regardless of membership group, fulfill this requirement since MM&P headquarters is located in the Baltimore area.

If someone in your family would like to make application for the scholarship, you can e-mail Jack Betts in the Plan Office at to request an application. Please include your name and address. Completed applications must be returned to the Plan Office by August 15, 2005 in order to allow time for the Union to verify your membership prior to submitting the application to Ashcroft & Gerel for consideration. You can also call 410-850-8600 if you have questions or want to request an application.



The federal government is continuing its aggressive prosecution of marine officers charged with violating environmental laws. Not only are the companies they work for being assessed huge fines, more and more mariners are facing criminal charges and fines for their actions.

The latest example occurred earlier this week when criminal charges were lodged against the first mate of the tug EVENING TIDE in connection with the April 27, 2003 oil spill that left some 327 tons of oil on the shore of Massachusetts’ Buzzard’s Bay. The first mate is facing charges of violating the Clean Water Act and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. He had helm duty aboard the tug that was pulling a barge containing over 13,600 tons of oil when the incident occurred.

The first mate is accused of leaving the wheelhouse to tend to duties aft when the tug wandered off course and struck rocks that punctured one of the barge’s tanks.
Federal prosecutors stated that the mate’s actions were negligent and violated the company’s watch standing orders.
Bouchard Transportation, the first mate’s employer, has already been ordered to pay a $10 million fine after it pled guilty to the same charges in November 2004. If convicted of the charges, the first mate could receive a year-and-a-half in jail and a fine.



In the last few decades, we have all become aware of the damaging effect that air and water pollution can have on our environment. Now comes word that an increase in undersea sound pollution caused by shipping and the world’s navies could be causing havoc with creatures of the deep.

Christopher Clark, a scientist from Cornell University that studies such matters, says the oceans are loud and getting louder. And that’s bad news for most sea life since hearing is their primary sense for traveling. Based on volume of traffic alone, scientists know the North Atlantic and North Pacific oceans, which are the busiest, are also the noisiest. Clark, who monitored Cape Cod Bay with underwater listening devices, found that the bay is saturated with sound.

Why is all that underwater noise such a concern?
Since hearing is the primary sense for marine life, which uses sound for navigation and communication, some scientists believe the spreading “acoustic smog” is essentially blinding marine life, affecting feeding, breeding, and other crucial activities. “Their world is just being collapsed,” Clark said.

Huge increases in commercial shipping have coincided with increased ocean noise. Between 1948 and 1998, the world shipping fleet has increased from 85 million tons of ship weight to 550 million tons, according to figures in a 2003 report “Ocean Noise and Marine Mammals,” published by the National Academies. Scientists say the background noise in the ocean has increased roughly 15 decibels in that time.


Earlier this month, the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on announced the publication of the CBP Advanced Passenger Information System (APIS) Final Rule in the Federal Register. The rule finalizes the requirement for all commercial air and sea carriers to submit advanced info on all passengers and crewmembers prior to entry to or departure from the US.

“This rule is an important tool for US Customs and Border Protection,” stated Commissioner Robert Bonner.
“CBP’s priority anti-terrorism mission mandates that we leverage info and technology in our layered strategy. This rule allows our targeting systems to identify known or suspected terrorists prior to their arrival in or departure from the US.”

This rule is a culmination of efforts begun in December 2001 to ensure that airlines and vessels submit complete, accurate info on passengers and crew. It also consolidates and harmonizes the reporting requirements for all DHS agencies, including the USCG and the Transportation Security Agency.



Independent port truckers in the US suffering from high fuel prices will continue to disrupt port operations this year, a Teamsters union official has predicted in the respected maritime industry publication “Fairplay”. “You’ll see shutdowns all across the country,” said Ron Carver, assistant director of the Teamsters, who noted that a labor action in Oakland was narrowly averted several weeks ago.

The drivers’ underlying problem, an unsustainable business model compounded by spiking fuel costs, is worse this year than last and Teamsters port division director Chuck Mack warned that “the inland transportation leg of ocean shipping is in a state of chaos throughout the US”.

Independent truckers can be unionized under the law (assuming they are employees of a motor carrier as well as independent contractors), and the Teamsters are now seeking to bring them into the union. In the Fairplay article, one independent trucker group leader Eduardo Verdayes said he “can’t wait for the Teamsters to open their new hiring hall” in his area.


Another segment of the transportation industry is also suffering tough times. According to some industry reports, the Bush Administration is trying its best to dismantle the passenger rail carrier Amtrak. Last week, the Amtrak Board of Directors floated a restructuring proposal that would break-up Amtrak, privatize key routes like the heavily utilized Northeast corridor traveled by many millions of rail passengers each year. Many transportation insiders believe the plan would ultimately set the stage for the wholesale elimination of long-distance train service for 4 million passengers in 41 states, covering over 18,000 miles. Some say the plan is so flawed that it will destroy this country’s national passenger rail system.

Amtrak serves more than 500 stations in 46 states. In fiscal year 2004, Amtrak served more than 25 million passengers, an all-time record. Each day, approximately 68,000 passengers travel on Amtrak. On weekdays, Amtrak operates up to 300 trains per day, excluding commuter trains Amtrak operates under contract. Amtrak operates over more than 22,000 route miles. It owns 650 route miles, primarily between Boston and Washington, DC, and in Michigan. In other parts of the country, Amtrak trains use tracks owned by freight railroads. Amtrak trains operate every minute of the entire year.

“If the Amtrak Board’s proposal to subject Amtrak to senseless privatization is adopted … 25 million Amtrak passengers, communities nationwide and 20,000 workers will suffer the consequences,” said AFL-CIO Transportation Trades Department President Edward Wytkind. “Transportation labor will do everything within our power to prevent Amtrak’s Board from destroying Amtrak from within. Our members and the 25 million passengers they serve will not allow politics and ideology to destroy our national passenger rail system.”




Between now and the end of July 2005 seats are available in the following courses:

  • AIS – Automatic Identification System: 5/7, 7/23
  • ARPA – Automatic Radar Plotting Aids: 5/9, 6/13, 7/18, 7/25
  • BRM – Bridge Resource Management: 6/13
  • BRMP – Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 6/14
  • BST – Basic Safety Training: 5/23, 6/27
  • CEM- Crew Endurance Management Coaches Training (2 day): 5/2

    CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses

  • CMM-ADVSTB – Advanced Stability: 5/2, 7/18
  • CMM-ADVWX – Advanced Meteorology: 5/9, 6/6
  • CMM-ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display and Info Systems: 5/16
  • CMM-MPP – Marine Propulsion Plants: 6/27
  • CMM-SHS-ADV-I – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 5/23, 6/20
  • CMM-SHS-ADV-II – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 6/27, 7/18
  • CMM-SHMGT I – Ship Management (week 1): 6/20
  • CMM-SHMGT II – Ship Management (week 2): 6/13
  • CMM-VPEN – Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 7/25
  • CMM-WKP- Advanced Watchkeeping: 6/6
  • CONT-PLNG – Contingency Planning: 5/6, 5/13, 6/17, 7/15, 7/22
  • FF-BADV – (Combined) Basic and Advanced Firefighting: 5/23, 6/27
  • HAZ – Hazardous Materials [5-day]: 5/2, 6/6, 7/25
  • LAP License Advancement Program: 7/11
  • LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 5/10, 5/18, 6/8, 6/14
  • MEDIA-RSP – Media Response: 5/5, 5/12, 6/16, 7/14, 7/21
  • MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Trans Drug & Alcohol Testing: 5/14, 6/25, 7/30
  • MED-PIC – Medical Person-In-Charge: 5/9, 6/13, 7/25
  • MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider (1st week of MED-PIC): 5/9, 6/13, 7/25

MSC – Military Sealift Command

  • MSC-CBRD-1 – Chemical Biological Radiological Defense Training Orientation: 5/19
  • MSC-DC – Damage Control: 5/16
  • MSC-ENVPRO: Environmental Protection: 5/18
  • MSC-SMA – Small Arms Training (4 day): 6/20
  • MSC-SMA-R – Small Arms Re-Qualification (2-day): 5/20, 6/24
    (must have proof of passing all 3 weapons within 2 years)
  • ROP-5 – Radar Observer Original and Renewal (5-day): 5/23
  • ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 5/2, 5/9, 5/23, 6/13, 7/18, 7/25
  • SEC-OFF-VCF – Security Officer,Vessel, Company & Facility: 6/13
  • SEC-OFF-FSO Security Officer, Facility: 7/12
  • SEC-PLT-AWR Security Awareness for Pilots: 7/19
  • SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling (5-day): 5/23
  • SHS-ESH-BRMP-3: Emergency Shiphandling/Bridge Resource Management for Pilots (3-day): 5/9, 7/20
  • TPIC Tankerman Person-In-Charge: 6/27
  • TRAC-TUG – Water Tractor and Azimuth Stern Drive Tugs: 5/5, 7/18



If you are scheduled for a course, call, write, or Email admissions to advise whether or not you will attend. Many classes are in demand and maintain a Standby List. “No Shows” are missed training opportunities for other members.


Courses are subject to change. Check the MITAGS website for up-to-date course descriptions associated with all course title abbreviations, and for schedule revisions and updated course availability. You can also check future schedules, review detailed course descriptions and register on-line or contact Admissions at or by calling toll-free, 1-866-656-5568.



 D O W    N A S D A Q
 10,198.80 +186.44 for the week  1,930.43  +16.67 for the week
Fund Name & Trading Symbol
 Vanguard 500 Index Fund (VFINX)
 Vanguard Extended Market Index Fund (VEXMX)
 Vanguard International Growth Fund (VWIGX)
 Vanguard Morgan Growth Fund (VMRGX)
 Vanguard Windsor II Fund (VWNFX)
 Vanguard GNMA Fund (VFIIX)
 Vanguard High Yield Corporate Fund (VWEHX)
 Vanguard Total Bond Index (VBMFX)
 Chase Growth Fund (CHASX)
 Fidelity Asset Manager (FASMX)
 Fidelity Growth and Income (FGRIX)
 Fidelity Magellan Fund (FMAGX)
 Fidelity Small Company Instl (FMACX)
 Fidelity Value Fund (FDVLX)
 Spartan US Equity Index Fund (FUSEX)

~ Reminders ~




All MM&P members are reminded that to sail aboard the T-AGS ships that MM&P-contracted Horizon Lines will be operating, you must have the required training certification and your certificates must be current in accordance with Military Sealift Command requirements. Members are also required to have had a MSC pre-employment physical and to possess Ship Security Clearance (see below).

The MSC Contract calls for all training certificates required for manning of these vessels to be no older than 5 years and that all STCW-95 courses be renewed every 5 years, or annually, as applicable.

Five-year renewable courses include, but are not limited to:

  • Advanced Fire Fighting
  • Basic Safety Training, and
  • Damage Control

Small Arms certificates must be less than 1 year old.

Members interested in applying for one of the positions onboard the T-AGS vessels are advised to make sure your certificates are up to date. If not, contact Mary Matlock or Diane Ford at MITAGS Admissions, email:, and schedule to take the course(s) needed.

Those MM&P members interested in obtaining more information and facts about the T-AGS Oceanographic Vessels are asked to email the Director of Special Projects requesting the “facts sheet”. It will be provided by return email in an Adobe Acrobat PDF format.

Members interested in employment on the T-AGS ships are asked to provide a 1-2 page resume. Please list the desired position you are seeking along with the certificates of training you possess and their dates. Upon receipt it will be forwarded to Horizon Lines and a confirmation sent back to the member. Vessel turnover commences Oct.17, 2004 and will continue until Jan.3, 2005. Crew rotations will start beginning as early as January 2005 and will continue through as late as June 2005. Positions for all ratings remain open.

The point of contact for sending a resume for employment on the Horizon Lines T-AGS Oceanographic Vessels is Richard Plant, MM&P’s Director of Special Projects. Send resumes in an email or as a Word file attachment to him at:, by fax to 410-850-0973 or by mail to:

Richard Plant, Director of Special Projects

700 Maritime Blvd.
Linthicum Heights, MD 21090


Members who want to sail for Horizon Lines on the T-AGS Oceanographic Survey vessels the company is set to begin operating for MSC must have Ship Security Clearance before going aboard.

Special software must be downloaded from the US Government’s Defense Security Service to complete the Security Clearance application. You must have an Internet connection and a Windows-based computer to retrieve the application and run the program.

Go to to download the software titled “EPSQ SUBJECT2_2”.

After the software is installed and the program is launched, select “Create” from the menu bar at the top of the screen. You will be required to enter your Social Security Number and a case-sensitive password. A window titled “Type of Form” will appear.

All Deck Officers should select the first button titled “Request for Security Clearance (SF86)” and then click “OK” to go to the next screen, “Type of Investigation”.

From the “Type of Investigation” screen:

  • Masters and Radio Officers should select the first button, “Single Scope Background Investigation (SSBI)”.
  • All other Deck Officers (C/M, 2/M, 3/M) should click on the second button, “National Agency Check (NAC or NACLC)”.

After selecting the appropriate investigation type, click on “OK” to begin filling in the forms.

When complete and all information has been validated, click on “Communications” from the menu bar at the top of the screen and select “Transmit to Security Officer”. Save the file to the hard drive on your computer using your last name (surname) as the file name. Send this file as an email attachment to Mike Bohlman at Horizon Lines, His phone number is 908-259-2803. You will need to provide Mike Bohlman with your name and the case-sensitive password you assigned to the file in order for Horizon Lines to open the file and process your Security Clearance.


Horizon Lines requests all mariners seeking employment aboard the T-AGS Oceanographic vessels to take their MSC Physical at specially-designated facilities only after being advised to do so by the Company. This is to assure that all requirements of the MSC Physical are properly met.

On Dec.6, MM&P members will begin manning the third of seven T-AGS ships operated by Horizon. The USNS SUMNER will be crewed-up in Portland, OR. MM&P wishes the crew a safe voyage and happy holidays.



Is it time to replace that car you’re driving? Vehicle loan rates are looking great at MM&P FCU.

Drive away in a new or used vehicle for a standard loan rate of:

4.75 percent for terms up to 24 months.
Standard loan rates for longer-term loans are:

5.00 percent for 25-48 months;
5.75 percent for 49-60 months ($20,000 minimum); and
6.25 percent for terms extending from 61-72 months ($25,000 minimum).
You can lower your loan rate even more — by 0.75 percent — by becoming a Preferred Borrower.

Are you paying a higher rate on your current vehicle loan at another institution? Consider refinancing your outside loan at the MM&P FCU and taking advantage of our lower loan rates.

MM&P FCU will finance up to 100 percent of your new vehicle loan, and up to 90 percent of NADA Book Value on a used vehicle. Maximum vehicle loan amount is $30,000.

MM&P FCU members can reduce the interest rate they pay on any new loan even further by becoming a preferred borrower. What is a preferred borrower? That’s a member who deposits at least 10 percent of the original loan amount into their MM&P FCU savings account and keeps those funds on deposit until the loan is paid in full. By doing this you save twice – first, your deposit works for you by earning our regular dividend savings rate, and second, you save money by reducing the interest rate on your loan by 0.75 percent.

Contact the MM&P FCU for full details on all loan programs by email to or call 1-800-382-7777 toll-free.




On Sept.30, Merck & Co. voluntarily withdrew Vioxx, a popular anti-inflammatory medication, from the market. As a result, individuals who are currently taking the drug have been asked to contact their health care professionals to discuss discontinuing use of Vioxx and possible alternative treatments.

MM&P Plans Administrator Valerie Verrecchio reports that, “We have gotten a number of calls from members who want to know what to do with their remaining supply of Vioxx and whether the Plan or NMHC will refund their co-pay for the unused portion.

“Unfortunately, neither NMHC nor the Plan was aware of the Merck decision prior to the public announcement on Sept.30. As of that date, all deliveries of Vioxx to our members was suspended in accordance with Merck’s announcement. Orders that had already been processed and were in transit could not be stopped.

“In regard to refunds, Merck has set up a website at where members can obtain information on how to recover refunds from Merck for the unused portion of medication. Members can also call following toll free number for information: 1-888-368-4699.

“We are sorry for any inc onvenience this may have caused to members currently taking this medication, however, the matter is out of the control of the Plans.”


MM&P Plans Administrator Valerie Verrecchio reports, “Good news! NMHC mail has finally gotten their website upgraded and functioning properly. I went in and tested it myself and found it to be quite user friendly.”

To use NMHC’s upgraded service, go to the NMHC Mail website at and click on “MEMBER LOGIN” at the bottom of the screen.

First-time and Registered users may bypass the welcome screen and go directly to the log-in page at

  • First-time users should then click on the link marked “NEW USER: REGISTER HERE”.
    This will take you to a page titled “MEMBER REGISTRATION” where you will need to enter demographic information and submit it by clicking on the
  • “CREATE ACCOUNT” button.

After creating your account, NMHC will email you a password to gain entry into your records. With your first sign-in, the NMHC system will prompt you to change the NMHC password to one of your own choosing.

Once you are registered at NMHC, you can check the status of open orders by logging-in to the system through the “MEMBER LOGIN” page and going into the “MAIL ORDER” menu. You can look up all prescriptions and get the price our members will pay for any medication. You can also view an order history of all of your medication transactions (both retail and mail) for the last 24 months, locate 24-hour pharmacies in your zip code region as well as access other helpful member education information.

“We hope this welcome improvement will assist our members. Although you cannot order refills on line if you don’t provide a credit or debit card number, you can phone in your refill. Once you register on the website, you will still have access to all of the other information including checking the status of your order once it is phoned in,” said Ms. Verrecchio.


The U.S. Coast Guard has announced an initiative to identify and collect the oral histories of its World War II veterans. Coast Guard WWII veterans, including SPARS and merchant mariners, are encouraged to record their histories online with the Library of Congress Veterans History Project at

Those veterans needing assistance in recording their stories can receive help from their local Coast Guard Auxiliary public affairs contact by leaving a message at 1-877-875-6296, a toll-free call.



LMS Ship Management, the company that manages vessels for Central Gulf, Sulphur Carriers and Waterman Steamship, wants to remind MM&P members that they offer their crewmembers a $75 reimbursement on the cost of purchasing certain slip-resistant shoes and boots for use aboard ship.

This offer has been in place for some time and LMS reports that “we have been pleased with the participation to date, but feel a reminder may be in order.” Their goal is for every crewmember to wear slip resistant footwear during working hours aboard their vessels.

The $75 reimbursement is available to each crewmember who provides LMS with an original receipt for the purchase of slip resistant footwear. In order for the crewmember to obtain the reimbursement, they must wear the shoes while on duty. Upon presentation of the receipt, the crewmember will be reimbursed on their pay voucher. The receipt will be retained by the Master and will remain aboard the vessel.

Vessels in the LMS footwear reimbursement program are:

  • Green Cove
  • Green Dale
  • Green Lake
  • Green Point
  • Atlantic Forest
  • Sulphur Enterprise
  • Energy Enterprise
  • SGT Matej C. Kocak
  • MAJ Stephen W. Pless, and
  • PFC Eugene A. Obregon

LMS notes that in order to receive reimbursement, crewmembers must purchase one of the following recommended brands:

  • WORX by Red Wing Slip Resistant Footwear
  • Caterpillar (must have steel toe & slip resistant sole)
  • Wolverine (must have steel toe and slip resistant sole)
  • Dunham Sierra Work Boot EH
  • Steel Toe Voyager
  • Georgia Boot 6- or 8-inch Safety Toe Boot
  • Dr. Marten’s (must have steel toe & slip resistant sole)


Of the boots listed above, Red Wing, Caterpillar and Wolverine boots are produced by US union labor.

Redwing’s Union-made products are: Red Wing shoes and boots, Red Wing motorcycle boots and Craftsman (Sears).

Wolverine World Wide manufactures boots under the Caterpillar brand using US union labor. (Other union made safety-shoe brands by Wolverine are the company’s Hy-Test, Durashock and Bates Military labels. The company’s Wolverine brand combat boots are also produced using US union labor.)

Most Dr. Marten’s shoes and boots are produced in the UK.

To find US, union-made products, visit the AFL-CIO Union Label Service and Trades website at and click on “Union Made Product Search”. To shop for union-made products online, go to



The Union Label recently went digital with a new website offering shoppers an array of union-made gifts, from clothing and chocolates to computers, games and greeting cards.

The website,, launches on the eve of the fall and winter holidays, when shoppers will spend an estimated $1 trillion on gifts, food, drinks and other seasonal items, explained Matt Bates, Secretary-Treasurer of the AFL-CIO Union Label & Service Trades Department. The all-union shopping site, however, will be a year-round operation because that is what consumers demand, he added.

“Shoppers spent $56 billion in Internet sales last year, and on-line spending is doubling every two to three years. Everyday we receive Email and calls from people who want to support good jobs by buying union-made goods and services. The website will reach millions of people, 24 hours a day, with a quick convenient way to shop union,” Bates said.

“The public is ready for this. People have seen millions of good jobs disappear and they are looking for ways to take a stand and make a difference,” he added.

The AFL-CIO will target the peak of the holiday shopping season by promoting “Buy Union Week” Nov. 26 through Dec. 5. The newly-launched, all-union shopping site will be a cornerstone of that campaign. MM&P has a link to the Shop Union Site on this website under “Links and Other Sources”.

The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, and Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd., Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1941. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973; Email: For further info or to subscribe contact John Peige at The Wheelhouse Weekly is sent via Email to MM&P-contracted vessels at sea, broadcast worldwide via FEC marine telex and is posted on our web page.