Rising Tide and Allies Shut Down Port of Vancouver

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Photos courtesy Portland Rising Tide

Portland Rising Tide is joining with other friends, allies, and activists in the Pacific Northwest to shut down the Port of Vancouver, Washington, right now in solidarity with the ILWU.

The ILWU has been locked out of a grain shipment terminal by United Grain, part of the Japanese conglomerate Mitsui & Co.“United Grain and its Japanese owners at Mitsui have failed to negotiate in good faith with the men and women of the ILWU for months and instead chose to aggressively prepare for a lockout, spending enormous resources on an out-of-state security firm,” according to ILWU spokeswoman Jennifer Sargent.

On July 15, 2011, hundreds of ILWU protestors blockaded a mile-long train coming into the terminal in protest. The struggle has continued through numerous actions of resistance, including this June, when ILWU members blocked a transport van from leaving the port.

Today, the ILWU’s struggle in the area is spilling over into a new terminal. The local ILWU chapter stands in solidarity with local community activists resisting a new Tesoro oil terminal illegally approved by the Port of Vancouver. Tesoro is responsible for  20,000 barrel oil spill in North Dakota last month, and a preventable refinery explosion in April that left five workers dead, the local ILWU head testified at a hearing last week, so the safety of their workers would be jeapordized by the terminal.

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As well as defying environmentalists and labor, the Port of Vancouver has also violated the rights of Indigenous peoples by Columbia River Treaty tribes before approving the oil terminal.

This from Portland Rising Tide’s Facebook page: “Good morning Port of Vancouver, if you can’t keep your grain terminal safe for workers, how can you make an oil terminal safe? You can’t so this morning Rising Tide is shutting you down!”

The port shutdown is livestreaming here.

 

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