Reading the July 28 editorial, “Inslee action goes wrong: With state troopers no longer protecting grain inspectors, ILWU has all the power,” The Columbian has taken the position that Gov. Jay Inslee is at fault. What did the governor do wrong? He let the company know that the state police were to be used in a temporary capacity. This was to let both United Grain Corp. and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union know they had a limited time to work together for a solution. This seems reasonable to me, as it was not Inslee’s job to solve this labor dispute.
United Grain seems to have taken the position that since the state police were escorting the inspectors, no reasonable agreement was necessary. It is not the governor’s fault that United Grain took advantage of the situation and stopped bargaining with the ILWU. United Grain is responsible for not being able to move their product, not the ILWU or the governor.
If United Grain were serious about wanting to be an asset to the city of Vancouver, they would have settled this labor dispute months ago. The local economy has been adversely affected by this dispute, not to mention the hardship put on all of the families of the ILWU.
Raymond E. Smith