Dakota Access workers say law enforcement needed to keep peace

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A coalition of Building and Construction Trade Unions from across Minnesota and North Dakota, whose members are building the Dakota Access Pipeline , called for continued law enforcement presence on the project and thanked local agencies for sending personnel to help keep the peace. In recent weeks, protesters have repeatedly entered active work sites, endangering hundreds of union workers and the protesters themselves. Today the coalition released a statement regarding the latest developments:

 “When people decide to use force and intimidation tactics against innocent workers that prevents them from doing their jobs, it negates the idea that this is an entirely peaceful demonstration,” according to Tim Mackey, Business Manager of the Laborers Union Local 563. “Just yesterday, they were blocking roads, refusing to leave privately owned land, setting fire to vehicles and construction equipment, throwing rocks and Molotov cocktails, and even firing a gun at a deputy, according to news reports.”

“Unfortunately, the use of aggressive protest tactics is not new on the Dakota Access right-of-way, and it’s why our members were increasingly afraid for their safety before law enforcement presence was beefed up. We believe the presence of law enforcement personnel from Minnesota and other neighboring states may be the only reason no one has been badly injured or killed.”

Read the full statement below.