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L.A. caravan heads to Boron with supplies for locked-out mineworkers

February 24, 2010 |  8:59 am

Representatives from several unions gathered at Dodger Stadium on Wednesday morning to escort two big rigs filled with food and supplies to workers in Boron locked out of the largest open-pit mine in California.

Organizers were taking about $32,000 worth of dry goods -- pasta, rice, beans and other essentials -- and 500 American flags to the Kern County community, union representatives said. They planned to distribute the food and personal items after driving to the Rio Tinto Borax mines and then rallying at the local union office.

Mineworkers have been locked out since Jan. 31 after the employee union refused to ratify a new labor contract.

About 600 workers are expected to receive the supplies, said Glen Arnodo, staff director at the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor.

Two van loads of carwash workers joined longshoremen, teachers and construction workers at the stadium parking lot as Connie Leyva, president of Local 1428 of the United Food and Commercial Workers, looked over the supply-filled big rigs.

“We want the workers to know that they’re not alone,” Leyva said. “The union stands behind their workers and we’re here for the long haul.”

-- Amina Khan

Photo: Tori Galloway, 4, of Boron, looks at the people gathered at Dodger Stadium for a caravan to the mining town to deliver food and supplies. Her grandfather, Bill Galloway, works at the Rio Tinto Borax mine, where workers have been locked out since Jan. 31 after the employee union refused to ratify a new labor contract. Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times

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