LOS ANGELES — With airports becoming ground zero for protests of the executive order temporarily banning refugees and citizens of seven countries from entering the U.S., the Los Angeles Airport Peace Officers Association (LAAPOA) urges travelers, airport employees and protesters to remain respectful of each other as the second weekend of protests commences.
LAX saw between 4,000 to 7,000 protesters last weekend and is expected to have even more this weekend. Airport police officers will be there to ensure the safety of everyone at the facility. However, LAAPOA members, business owners, airport employees and travelers have vehemently expressed concerns via social media regarding the decision last week from our city leaders and airport executive management who ordered officers to refrain from arresting protesters, even those who violated the law by obstructing and impeding vehicular traffic and passenger flow. If this pattern continues, it puts everyone at the location and surrounding areas at risk.
“Protesters who comply with the law must be allowed to exercise their First Amendment rights. LAAPOA members have taken an oath to defend the Constitution and First Amendment, but we will not stand idly by and allow a small group of protesters who break the law to jeopardize the public peace,” said LAAPOA President Marshall McClain. “The safety and security of LAX and our airports is our sole focus — and that means protecting the traveling public, airport employees and protesters alike.”