ILWU Local 5

Representing workers' rights since 1999

ILWU Local 5 appreciates the decision to close retail locations for the safety of workers and customers, particularly given the current pandemic. This was the right decision for our community. We are however disappointed in the lack of support Powell's is committing to those who are responsible for the Company's success. It is the labor, intelligence and heart of the employees that has made Powell's the shining beacon of success within the independent book-selling world. The decision to lay workers off without reasonable provisions for their well-being will have a deep and lasting impact not only to them, but to the community at large. In this society, for any crisis event, it appears it is the workers who take the brunt of trauma. We find this wholly unacceptable on every level. There must be a better way - one that provides social safety nets for all workers. We will continue that struggle... In the meantime, Local 5 continues to communicate with the company and express our ideals as to how workers should be treated. As far as how the community can help, Local 5 has set up a worker relief fund on our website (

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