Here's an interesting way for unions to support the Occupy movement: The Maryland State and District of Columbia AFL-CIO passed a resolution "calling on its members to treat Occupy encampments in the District and Baltimore as they would a formal picket line." The resolution further spells out what that means:
The resolution states the AFL-CIO will support any “unionized or non-unionized worker who refuses to break up, raid or confiscate the belongings of protesters.”
It also calls “on unions representing public workers and public safety workers to not participate in such activity as to deny the rights of occupiers.”
“Protest movements, like strike lines and organizing campaigns do not have curfews and are not 9 to 5 activities,” the resolution states. “And in doing so, we recognize and will work to protect the right for occupiers to protest 24 hours a day, on-site, with proper protection, including food, medical supplies, water and tents.”
That doesn't mean police won't follow orders to break up an encampment, but the resolution offers support if they do want to push back against such an order, and pressures local elected officials to think twice before issuing the order. In any event, Washington, DC Mayor Vincent Gray has not seemed inclined to evict occupiers from McPherson Square, which is currently covered in tents. Protesters were arrested when they took over an abandoned school most recently used as a homeless shelter to draw attention to lack of support and services for homeless people, but there hasn't been broad action against the main occupation.
It would be interesting to see other local labor federations pass similar resolutions.