Washington ports brace for Occupy protests

AP News
Posted: Dec 12, 2011 2:40 PM
Washington ports brace for Occupy protests

Longshoremen at the Longview, Wash., port have gone home for the day, essentially shutting down the terminal after Occupy Wall Street demonstrators began protesting.

International Longshore & Warehouse Union spokeswoman Jennifer Sargent says the union sent their workers home out of concerns for their "health and safety."

Port of Longview spokesman Ashley Helenberg says the decision to shut down operations was made by both the port and the union. She says about 20 shifts were affected. The port had one vessel to work on Monday.

Sargent says that if union workers participated in the Occupy protest, they did so as individuals, not as part of the union.

Sargent says it remains to be seen what will happen at the bigger port of Seattle when Occupy Seattle protesters are scheduled to rally there Monday afternoon.

ILWU leaders have said they don't support Occupy's protest.