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I don't have time to write a full diary and I don't have the blistering essay abilities of most of the writers here.  But how has nobody covered the issue of the longshoremen out in Washington (not DC)?

At least one group of workers has decided it's time to take action in defense of their rights.

From what I can gather, the company EGT came in and built a new facility at the port of Longview.  In exchange for tax breaks, they agreed to employ ILWU workers.  Once the facility was built, EGT decided they wanted cheaper labor and decided to contract another group of workers represented by a different union.  Presumably for less pay.

ILWU filed suit which seems to be still pending.  Here's another article with some background:

And here would updates covering ILWU Local 21 and the ongoing saga:

Oh... for those of you in FB land you can like ILWU Local 21 as a way of showing support for their cause:

10:35 AM PT: UPDATE: Looks like a show of solidatrity.  Seattle, Tacoma, Everett ports are effectively shut down.

"An injury to one is an injury to all."
-Open letter from ILWU to OE union members.

2:01 PM PT: A minor update, new press release from ILWU regarding a statement from the ITF.

I read this article and wanted to share an excerpt:

Though a small port, Longview is a gateway to the world for the Pacific Northwest's sizable agricultural industry. The Daily News reports that EGT is owned by a Japanese company, a Korean shipper, and St. Louis-based Bunge North America, which earned a $2.5 billion profit last year. The company says it would cost $1 million more annually to run the terminal with ILWU labor.

2.5 billion in profits, but can't afford 1 million more in wages.  Disgusting.

Originally posted to montressor on Thu Sep 08, 2011 at 09:59 AM PDT.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions and PacNW Kossacks.

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