Los Angeles : Dockworkers protesting the US war in Iraq shut down all the ports on the US west coast Thursday.
The action by thousands of dockworkers on May Day shut down all 29 ports on the US West Coast from Seattle to San Diego and was scheduled to last for the entire day shift from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The action came two months before the contract expires between the dockworkers, represented by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, and the Pacific Maritime Association, which represents port operators and large shippers.
“We are supporting the troops and telling politicians in Washington that it’s time to end the war in Iraq,” said union President Bob McEllrath in a press release.
The Pacific Maritime Association had complained about the union’s planned action with an arbitrator, which had ordered the union to go to work today. The union said that its strike action was protected by the constitution.
A dispute between the maritime association and the dockworkers paralyzed West Coast ports for 10 days in 2002.