by Cindy DomingoIn a show of worker power, the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) will shut down all twenty-nine West Coast ports for eight hours on Friday, June 19 in celebration of Juneteenth, standing in solidarity against police violence and calling for an end to white supremacy.
The West Coast work stoppage and the June 9 action were, in part, spearheaded by Local 10 ILWU, based in San Francisco, the only predominantly African American local on the West Coast.
Keith Shanklan, the first Black President of ILWU Local 34 in Oakland, came together with Locals 10, 75 and 91 to organize the Juneteenth action.
In 1981, the ILWU passed a resolution at the recommendation of Seattle labor officials in the Alaska Cannery Workers Union, Local 37 ILWU.
Just as in the bloody waterfront strike of 1934, Prawl recalled, when longshore workers fought for a West Coast contract, police violence resulted in the murder of labor activists.