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Shippers may now use muscle to avoid another “Occupy” event

By Patrick Burnson, Executive Editor
December 21, 2011

Shippers have told the Port of Oakland that it’s time to get tough with the “Occupy” movement, or they’ll be moving their cargo through other ocean cargo gateways next year. The port listened, but Oakland’s City Council failed to support its most vital economic resource.

According to published reports, global shippers comprising Target, Walgreens, J.C. Penney, and Crate and Barrel had told the Port Commission that if tougher measures are not taken to keep protesters from disrupting operations, they will take their business elsewhere.

The port’s executive director, Omar Benjamin, brought this concern to Oakland’s City Council, but a vote to consider such action was deliberately avoided. Now “Occupy” leaders are calling this a victory.

Benjamin’s letter to the Council noted that many other ports – including those with lower labor and environmental standards – compete with Oakland on the basis of price.

“Disruptions here makes it easier for them to take cargo and jobs from us,” he said.

About the Author

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Patrick Burnson
Executive Editor

Patrick Burnson is executive editor for Logistics Management and Supply Chain Management Review magazines and web sites. Patrick is a widely-published writer and editor who has spent most of his career covering international trade, global logistics, and supply chain management. He lives and works in San Francisco, providing readers with a Pacific Rim perspective on industry trends and forecasts. You can reach him directly at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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