Friday, October 03, 2008


On August 23, 2007 police and private security guards viciously attacked, maced and arrested two ILWU Local 10 brothers, Jason Ruffin and Aaron Harrison, coming back to work after lunch. When the guards insisted on searching their car, the longshoremen questioned their authority to do so and called the Local 10 business agent. While one was talking on the phone and without provocation, they were assaulted, dragged from the car, handcuffed, jailed and charged with “trespassing” and “obstructing a police officer”.

Their struggle for justice goes on and a rally is planned for October 6 as the trial commences in Woodland, California, Yolo County Courthouse (8th and Court St.)

The picture above is from a rally last year in support of the men.

For an earlier more in depth report in the Oread Daily entitled "HARD WORKING AMERICANS TREATED LIKE TERRORISTS" go to .

The following was taken from Sacramento for Democracy.

Stand Up For ILWU 10 Members Jason Ruffin and Aaron Harrison: Drop The Bogus Charges


On October 6, 2008 in Woodland, California, Yolo County Courthouse (8th and Court St.) two young Local 10 ILWU Black longshoremen, Jason Ruffin and Aaron Harrison, will go on trial. On August 23, 2007, these two unionists were beaten and arrested while calling their union business agent to find out what rights they have on the docks. Although they had already been on the docks prior to lunch the police used the increased repressive (MARSEC) maritime security regulations to assault these union members. They were initially charged with "trespassing" and "resisting arrest" but the "trespassing" charge was dropped. The video shows that they did nothing wrong.

The Sacramento police and Yolo County sheriff's department have a record of racist attacks on African American and Mexican American youth. They recently ordered a court room closed on a murder case to prevent the family and public to attend the hearings.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is defending these youth against unconstitutional police measures. The defense of these unionists is critical not just for them, their families and ILWU but all transport workers and all organized labor and working people. Transportation workers face the brunt of this repressive legislation including the TWIC cards which are now being used to fire workers who have past criminal records and to target port truckers, many of whom are immigrants.

The use of "homeland security" and the bipartisan "war on terror" to attack US workers is not new and not an accident. It is part of the war on the working class and a coordinated effort to repress workers and control the trade union movement. The government violates the constitution daily and wages a criminal war in the Middle East. And now Wall Street crooks go "scot free" while workers in this country are attacked using the rubric of "homeland security".

We condemn this attack and demand that the charges against these ILWU 10 brothers be dropped. All unions and workers should attend the rally that will be held on Monday October 6, 2008. Buses will leave ILWU Local 10 at 6 AM (400 North Point St. by Fisherman's Wharf)

Initiated by Transport Workers Solidarity Committee

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