Wheelhouse Weekly – July 21, 2005

July 21st 2005



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

Volume 9 . . . . . Number 29 . . . . July 21, 2005






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


“By the time you read this, you may have received a letter, or soon will be receiving a letter, from ILA President John Bowers informing you that the Federal Government has initiated a CIVIL RICO lawsuit against the ILA seeking to terminate certain individuals from both their elected office and membership in the ILA, seeking to put a Monitor in place over the International, and seeking new elections.

I, along with 23 other ILA Vice Presidents who have seats on the Executive Board, have been named in the lawsuit as nominal defendants, including two of the most recently elected VPs who were seated on June 1st of this year.

At an ILA Executive Board meeting on Tuesday, July 19th, I finally learned what a nominal defendant is. A nominal defendant is a defendant who has not been charged with any wrongdoing but because a monitor, if he is appointed, would have control over some of the job functions that are currently being done by the defendant, he is named because he is impacted by the RICO Lawsuit.

There are no charges against the Masters, Mates and Pilots as a union, or against me as the President of the Masters, Mates and Pilots. No other MM&P officials have been charged in this case.

This will be a long and involved lawsuit and may take three to four years to resolve. I will attempt to keep you informed over the Internet or in the MM&P newspaper.

I appreciate those individuals who have called me and asked about the case and were concerned about me personally but since the case was only filed on the 30th of June, it was hard to provide any concrete news until after the meeting yesterday when all nominal defendants were told what the complete case involved.”




Last year, the MM&P Executive Board made a commitment to purchase the building that houses the union’s headquarters and MM&P Plans. Since 1970, the building and land have been the property of the MATES Trust, which owns the union’s training facilities, MITAGS and PMI. Since 1984, when the union and Plans moved from New York to Baltimore, both organizations, as tenants of the building, have been paying fair market rent to the MITAGS Trust. With a changing economy, in recent years the school’s financial position has become more challenging.

To provide financial assistance to MITAGS, the union made an offer to purchase the land and the building, subject to approval from the US Department of Labor. That approval has now been granted. “The union believes the transaction will create a win/win situation since it will give MITAGS more money for capital improvements, which in turn will generate new business. The union, on the other hand, is convinced that, based on local property values, it is buying an appreciating asset,” said MM&P International President Capt. Tim Brown.



MM&P has reached agreement with Sulphur Carriers Inc., New Orleans, on a new six-year contract for the SULPHUR ENTERPRISE. MM&P Gulf Coast Vice President Bob Groh negotiated for the union. He was assisted by Mike Rodriguez, executive assistant to MM&P International President Tim Brown, and by Port Agent Wayne Farthing. A special thanks is also extended to Captain Shawn Tucy, Capt. Ed Osander and Chief Mates Harold Held and John Humphreys. The new contract, effective June 16, provides a 2.5 percent increase in wages for the current year and 3 percent for each of the following years.

Beginning June 16, 2007, vacation for each deck officer will be increased by one day. The IRAP contribution was increased, as were contributions to the MM&P Health & Welfare. Bob Groh thanks Mike Cameron, who represented Sulphur Carriers, for his part in the negotiations. “We have enjoyed a long and mutually beneficial history with Sulphur Carriers that will continue into the future with this agreement,” Groh said. Negotiations are ongoing with Central Gulf Lines over a new contract for the ENERGY ENTERPRISE.




For those officers needing security clearance for military contract vessels please be aware that the old EPSQ software is no longer being accepted. A newer software, the eQIP system, is now being utilized. Horizon Lines, or whichever company the individual is going to work for, must enable the applicant’s ability to access the on-line form (eQIP system) that is now required. Once the applicant has access to the new form it must be completed within 30 days.

New instructions on the process are being developed by Mike Bohlman of Horizon Lines and Richard Plant, MM&P’s Director of Special Projects. This information will be incorporated into the MSC Oceanographic Facts Sheet that will be distributed to all ports later this week. Those members applying for jobs with Horizon Lines should stop working with the EPSQ software since it is no longer acceptable. Once approved or accepted by the company, members will be given instructions as to how to obtain security clearance as needed. “Sorry for this inconvenience – national security has required the necessity for these changes,” Plant said.



MM&P-contracted APL has won a “Supplier of the Year” award from a subsidiary of BP, one of the world’s largest integrated oil companies. BP’s petrochemicals businesses in the Americas cited APL’s performance and commitment to safety in presenting the honor. “We’re obviously pleased to win this honor, because it validates our commitment to outstanding service,” said David Noe, Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Customer Support at APL. “But most of all, we’re gratified to have such tangible proof that we’re satisfying a key customer.”


Making an appearance against a backdrop of maritime security technology at the Port of Baltimore, just a few miles from MM&P’s international headquarters, President Bush defended the USA Patriot Act and called on Congress to pass expiring provisions without change.

Speaking at Baltimore’s Dundalk Marine Terminal, Bush said the US and its allies are succeeding against the threat of terrorism. “The only way to defeat an ideology of hatred is with an ideology of hope found in democracy and freedom,” Bush said. During his visit, Bush was shown a demonstration of the VACIS mobile imaging system used to inspect containers.

President Bush was accompanied by Attorney General Alberto Gonzales and Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff.
The President said he is proposing $2.3 billion in next year’s budget for maritime security, an amount he said was 10 times greater than pre-9/11 levels.



Customs and Border Protection officials say that by the end of the year, every container imported through Los Angeles-Long Beach will be scanned for radiation. The effort is part of a nationwide program to intercept materials that could be used by terrorists to produce weapons of mass destruction.

Customs Commissioner Robert Bonner supervised a demonstration earlier this week of the radiation detection portals at MM&P-contracted Maersk Sealand’s Los Angeles terminal. The portals help the agency fulfill its goal of ensuring maximum security at ports of entry without slowing down the movement of legitimate cargo. The highly-sensitive monitors detect the presence of nuclear and radiological materials in vehicles and containers, but their use will be transparent to importers. It takes less than 10 seconds for a truck to pull a 40-foot container past a monitor.

Customs has installed 14 radiation portals in LA-Long Beach and will have 90 in operation by the end of the year. Some 12,000 containers, or 44 percent of all US ocean-borne imported containers, move through LA-Long Beach each day, Bonner said. There are currently about 540 radiation portals in use nationwide at seaports, border crossings and other ports of entry.




Published media reports say that on the day that the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach intend to begin late-night operations, truck drivers are considering a meeting for July 23 to protest the move. Truckers are angry about having to work overnight shifts with no increase in pay.

The LA/LB port complex is the nation’s largest terminal system. So far, the two ports have avoided the long delays of the past that left ships sitting idle waiting to be unloaded, but importers are edgy about the ports’ ability to manage an ever increasing amount of incoming tonnage.

The ports’ 10,000 short-haul truckers do not receive premium night-shift pay as most of these drivers are Hispanics, and they have no union to ensure they are properly compensated. Many of the drivers are owner-operators who are paid by the haul, and they work for truck service companies at the port.


Striking truckers blockaded ports in Puerto Rico earlier this week, disrupting cargo movement at major terminals including those serving MM&P-contracted Horizon Lines. Horizon’s terminals are open and all management and labor are on site with the next vessel expected later this week. A message from Horizon to its customers said there had been no breakthrough in ongoing talks between the truckers and the government.



Special Representative Capt. Joe Stone represented MM&P at the Change of Command and Retirement Ceremony for Capt. Rodney McFadden, US Naval Reserve, who was the Commanding Officer of the Merchant Marine Reserve Operational Command Headquarters, Unit 206, held at the Washington Navy Yard on July 9th. Capt. McFadden is a graduate of the New York Maritime College at Fort Schuyler and sailed from 1974 to 1984 as a merchant mariner in jobs ranging from Able Seaman to Master.

Capt. McFadden was recalled to active duty as Program Manager of the Merchant Marine Reserve program in 1986 and has held a number of managerial positions of increasing importance since that time. He was awarded the prestigious Legion of Merit Medal for his dedication over the 30-plus years of his naval service. Capt. McFadden was relieved by Capt. Owen Doherty, USNR. Capt. Doherty is employed at the Maritime Administration in Washington, DC.



CLASS OPENINGS: Between now and the end of September 2005, seats are available in the following courses:

AIS – Automatic Identification System: 8/5, 9/2
ARPA – Automatic Radar Plotting Aids: 7/25, 8/15, 9/26
AZIPOD – Azipod Propulsion System (2 day): 9/12

BRM – Bridge Resource Management: 8/1
BRMP – Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 8/9
BST – Basic Safety Training: 8/29, 9/2

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]
CMM-CHS I – Advanced Cargo Handling (week 1): 8/22
CMM-CHS II – Advanced Cargo Handling (week 2): 8/15
CMM-ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display and Info Systems: 8/1, 9/19
CMM-MPP – Marine Propulsion Plants: 8/8
CMM-SHS-ADV-I – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 7/25, 8/8, 8/15, 8/22, 9/26
CMM-SHS-ADV-II – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 8/15
CMM-SHMGT I – Ship Management (week 1): 9/26
CMM-SHMGT I – Ship Management (week 2): 9/19
CMM-VPEN – Voyage Planning and Electronic Navigation: 7/25
CMM-ADVWX – Advanced Meteorology: 9/12
CMM-WKP- Advanced Watchkeeping: 8/29

CONT-PLNG – Contingency Planning: 9/9

FF-BADV – (Combined) Basic and Advanced Firefighting: 8/24, 9/26

HAZ-Hazardous Materials (5-day): 8/8, 9/12

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage [Evening Seminar]: 8/9, 9/21

MEDIA-RSP – Media Response: 8/4, 9/8
MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Trans Drug & Alcohol Testing: 7/30, 8/20, 9/24
MED-PIC – Medical Person-In-Charge: 8/15, 9/26
MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 8/15, 9/26 (1st week of MED-PIC)

[MSC – Military Sealift Command]
MSC-SMA – Small Arms Training (4 day): 8/29
MSC-SMA-R – Small Arms Re-Qualification (2-day): 9/2 (must have proof of passing all 3 weapons within 2 years)

ROP-5 – Radar Observer Original and Renewal (5-day): 8/22
ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 7/25, 8/15, 8/20, 9/26

SEC-OFF-VCF – Security Officer, Vessel, Company & Facility: 8/1, 9/5
SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling (5 day): 8/29

TPIC – Tankerman Person-In-Charge: 9/26
TRAC-TUG – Water Tractor and Azimuth Stern Drive Tugs: 9/15

Check the MITAGS website at for course descriptions associated with the course title abbreviations, and schedule revisions. For class availability or info on MITAGS courses and programs, contact admissions toll-free at 866-656-5568 or Email:



July 2005

7/25-29 Medical Care Provider
7/25-8/5 Medical Person-In-Charge
7/25-8/5 Celestial Navigation

August 2005

8/8-12 Radar Observer Unlimited
8/8-12 Basic Meteorology
8/8-12 Emergency Shiphandling – 5 day
8/15-19 ECDIS
8/15-19 Ship Construction and Basic Stability
8/15-19 ARPA
8/15 Radar Renewal
8/15-17 Ship Security Officer
8/22-26 Basic Cargo Handling & Stowage
8/22-9/2 GMDSS
8/29-9/2 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
8/29-9/2 Basic Shiphandling
8/30-31 MAXIMO

September 2005

9/6-9 Basic Shiphandling
9/12-16 Medical Care Provider
9/12-16 Radar Observer Unlimited
9/12-24 100 Ton OUPV (12 days Mon.-Sat.)
9/12-23 Medical Person-In-Charge
9/12-23 GMDSS
9/19-23 Basic Safety Training
9/19-23 Emergency Shiphandling – 5 day
9/19-23 ARPA
9/19/05 Radar Renewal
9/19-20 Search and Rescue
9/20-23 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
9/21-23 Emergency Procedures

October 2005

10/3-7 ECDIS
10/3-14 Basic Watchkeeping
10/10-12 Bridge Resource Management
10/10-14 Tankerman Person-In-Charge
10/10-14 Emergency Shiphandling – 5 day
10/17-28 GMDSS
10/18-21 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
10/24-26 Ship Security Officer
10/24-28 ARPA
10/24 Radar Renewal
10/31 Flashing Light

November 2005

10/31-11/2 Medical Care Provider
10/31-11/11 Medical Person-In-Charge
11/7-11 TPIC
11/7-18 GMDSS
11/7-18 Advanced Shiphandling
11/7-19 100 Ton OUPV
11/14-18 ECDIS
11/28-12/2 Radar Observer Unlimited
11/28-12/2 Emergency Shiphandling 5-day

December 2005

12/5-9 Medical Care Provider
12/5-9 ARPA
12/5-16 Basic Safety Training
12/5-16 GMDSS
12/5-16 Medical Person-In-Charge
12/13-16 Lifeboat/Survival Craft
12/19-21 Ship Security Officer
12/19-23 ARPA
12/19-23 Basic Shiphandling
12/26-30 Emergency Shiphandling 5-day


For registration call Jennifer Fowler 888-893-7829



 D O W  N A S D A Q  S & P 500
10,689.15 +131.76 for the week  2,188.57  +44.46 for the week  1,235.20  +11.91 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.