Update 5 p.m. Monday:
An original Occupy Long Beach member from Belmont Shore -- who goes by the name Sonny because he wants his activism separate from his work as a college professor -- attended the morning demonstrations.
He said Monday afternoon that the protest was largely peaceful but disputed whether protesters were ever on private property; he said several hundred protesters in the rain gathered on the street and a parking lot they believed was a public space. He said protesters had long planned to leave the port location about 9 a.m. to attend an L.A. immigration protest. He also said Occupy Long Beach members have generally agreed that they will best serve the Occupy interests by their presence and do not wish to be arrested unless absolutely necessary.
Huffington Post reported:
Occupy LB and LA protesters gathered early Monday morning at the Port of Long Beach to take part in a West Coast blockade of all ports. After obstructing an intersection, demonstrators eventually backed down in the face of a coalition of law enforcement groups -- but not before two were arrested and dozens of trucks were blocked from their destinations.
Protesters were focused on a pier that led to the SSA Marine, a shipping company that is 51% owned by Goldman Sachs. A video released one week ago explains that the reasons for the Port of Long Beach action include migrant and workers' rights and trade policy.
In a later story from HuffPost:
Two were arrested at the Port of Long Beach, according to Occupy Los Angeles Twitter reports, and one of them includes longtime Los Angeles activist Kwazi Nkrumah. The other is a man from Riverside named Nick, according to NBC L.A.. The group is calling for donations to a bail fund.
Today's action was not officially endorsed by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union, notes the Los Angeles Times, but protest organizers were hoping that labor leaders would recognize the picket line.
By the 9 a.m. hour, the blockade seemed to be winding down at the Port of Long Beach, but the action definitely had an impact. Organizer Michael Novick told the Los Angeles Times, "We've already blocked 200 trucks from coming in." Helicopter coverage from KTLA showed a long line of backed up trucks on the street leading into the port.
Long Beach Police Department's press statement:
The demonstration at the port ended with two arrests and two citations issued, after they walked past the designated protest location onto private property and given dispersal orders in English and Spanish repeatedly but did not comply. Officers slowly approached, and most dispersed but two were arrested (Nathaniel Sierdsma, 18-year-old San Bernadino resident and Kwazi Nkrumah, 57-year-old Los Angeles resident).
Most of protesters were cooperative most of the time, but a few anarchists were antagonistic throughout and were seen arming themselves with rocks and pieces of concrete.
"LBPD partnered with numerous law enforcement agencies to prepare for this incident," Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell said in a statement. "The unified response was instrumental in managing this event and we would like to thank those who contributed, including: U.S. Coast Guard, Los Angeles Police Department, Long Beach Harbor Department, Los Angeles Port Police, California Highway Patrol, Long Beach Fire Department, Los Angeles Fire Department, and our federal partners."
From City News Service:
A spokesman for a group of largely Latino truck drivers who ferry containers from the docks said beforehand that those non-union drivers would honor the Occupy protest line. Franklin Serrano told KVEA that the drivers know "we will lose a day's pay'' but the companies affected "will lose millions in profits.'' Occupy organizers said the Long Beach march would also serve to support 26 non-union truck drivers who they said were fired for wearing Teamsters jackets at port terminals, and said SSA Marine was known for being "anti- union.''
No job action was announced for the Port of Los Angeles in San Pedro, but other Occupy marches were planned in San Diego, Port Hueneme in Ventura County, and also in Hawaii and Alaska.