The battle at Southern California ports heats up as California Attorney General Jerry Brown announced a set of lawsuits against port trucking companies.
Groups including the East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice supported the action. A statement by Angelo Logan of the East Yard Communities group said “These companies engage in cost-cutting schemes that take advantage of their workers and avoid California taxes. They unlawfully classify their workers as ‘independent contractors,’ circumventing state employment taxes and labor laws that guarantee workers compensation, disability benefits and the right to a minimum wage.”
Speaking on behalf of the entire Coalition for Clean & Safe Ports, an alliance of over 35 environmental, public health, faith-based, community and labor organizations, Logan said, “If you live near rail yards, transportation corridors or the ports, you don’t need piles of proof that the industry scams the system at every turn to squeeze out more profit on the backs of its workers – residents like me pay the price with our lungs and livelihoods each and every day.”
Earlier, a federal judge refused to stop the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach from implementing a controversial plan requiring drivers to be employees of port concession companies.