Longshore union members are accused of threatening to rape a manager’s daughter and harming the children of other executives. The Port of Vancouver, Washington, labor dispute has been going on for more than a year. The situation between the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) and the United Grain Corporation has reportedly taken a menacing and aggressive turn as of late.
ILWU Local 4 union members have allegedly harassed workers and security officers at the Port of Vancouver, which is adjacent to the Columbia River in Portland. The dockworkers created a picket line at the expert terminal in February after United Grain locked them out during the labor dispute.
The problems reportedly began when United Grain accused a union leader of sabotaging Port of Vancouver operations. The worker allegedly did not match contract deals between Export Grain Terminal in nearby Longview and the ILWU. The company locked out the longshoremen and replaced them with other dockworkers. ILWU Local 4 has denied the accusations by United Grain.
National Labor Relations Board Regional Director Ronald Hooks said all the claims levied against the workers are documented in legal filings. “It is a situation that has evolved, or devolved, depending on your definition. It is something that both sides are going to have to work out,” Hooks added.
Sampling of accusations filed against the longshore union members
- Confronting a United Grain manager at a mall in Vancouver in April 2013, and preventing him from leaving.
- Shining spotlights into vehicles carrying managers and security personnel on several occasions in an attempt to blind them as they entered the port facility, and causing permanent eye damage to one security officer. The filing claims the dockworkers also tailed and “recklessly pursued” those vehicles and vendor trucks onto nearby highways after they left the port.
- Threatening to throw 10 United Grain managers off a dock into the Columbia River.
- Carrying heavy metal chains in an incident in March 2013 during which they threatened that they would “f— [the managers] up,” warned that they knew where the managers lived and said they would rape one manager’s daughter.
- Hurling racial slurs at black security personnel and threatening to “beat” them.
- Harassing a manager repeatedly, including a specific incident on April 30, 2013, when the dockworkers threatened to “wring [his] f—ing neck” and told him his family was in danger. They allegedly toyed with him for months afterward, asking, “Are [your] children OK today?”
[Image Via: Oregon Live]