International Longshoremen's Association and Atlantic Coast District, ILA Offices Will Reopen Wednesday, September 19, 2001, Pending Inspection of Headquarters

Sep 14, 2001, 01:00 ET from International Longshoremen's Association, AFL-CIO

    NEW YORK, Sept. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- The offices of the International
 Longshoremen's Association, AFL-CIO and Atlantic Coast District, ILA, will
 reopen Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2001, according to an announcement by John Bowers,
 International President.  ILA and ACD headquarters are located at 17 Battery
 Place in Lower Manhattan, several blocks south of the destroyed World Trade
 Center Towers.  Mr. Bowers said he intends to have ILA headquarters inspected
 on Monday, Sept. 17, before giving the go-ahead for a Wednesday reopening.
     Mr. Bowers reported that all ILA personnel, including a number of ILA
 officials from North Atlantic ports who were attending meetings in Lower
 Manhattan on Tuesday morning, Sept. 11, 2001, were evacuated safely from the
 area.  Mr. Bowers commended his staff for their poise during the crisis.  ILA
 headquarters were evacuated shortly after the initial attack at the World
 Trade Center and many ILA staff were forced to outrun the soot, smoke and
 falling debris as they made their way out of Manhattan on foot across the
 Brooklyn Bridge.
     From media accounts, it does not appear 17 Battery Place suffered
 structural damage, however Mr. Bowers wants to make certain the building is
 safe for ILA employees prior to their return.
     "I'm sure I speak for everyone in the ILA when I express my outrage over
 the perpetrators of this horrible tragedy and my sympathy to the victims and
 their families," Mr. Bowers said.  "I thank God that my staff escaped without
 severe harm and that the entire staff from the offices of New York Shipping
 Association and the NYSA-ILA Fund offices on the 19th and 20th Floors of Two
 World Trade Center were safely evacuated.  However, I'm deeply saddened that
 many other friends I know remain missing and may have been killed in this
 vicious and cowardly attack."
     Yesterday, New York Shipping Association and ILA announced that the Port
 of New York and New Jersey will reopen on Friday, Sept. 14, 2001.
     Mr. Bowers said that ILA and NYSA-ILA staff members will be encouraged to
 utilize counseling available through their employer-sponsored health plans.
 Mr. Bowers plans to have counselors available next week to assist ILA staff
 and officers at the union's headquarters.
     "At all our ILA ports from Maine to Texas, along the Great Lakes, Eastern
 Canada and Puerto Rico, the ILA remains committed to proving that our initials
 also stand for I Love America," Mr. Bowers said.  "We will assist the American
 government in any way we can to get through this monumental tragedy and prove,
 once again, that the United States is the greatest nation on earth."
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SOURCE International Longshoremen's Association, AFL-CIO