Monday, June 21, 2010

Protesters Arrested at Nuke-Parts Plant in Kansas City

by Jane Stoever and Ann Suellentrop

from Common Dreams

The National Nuclear Security Administration's Kansas City Plant, managed by Honeywell to help make nuclear weapons, became the scene of civil disobedience for the first time June 18. Four people were arrested when they blocked the employees' entrance to the plant, while about 35 supporters blocked the plant's front driveway.

Crosses were planted along the highway and chalk bodies colored the sidewalks. A huge sheet-turned-banner told the story of death and destruction related to the plant. More than a dozen vehicles from NNSA, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Kansas City Police came to the scene, and a police helicopter hovered overhead.

"We want to shut down the plant and clean up the contamination," protester Jane Stoever explained to a guard for the NNSA. "And we want to stop them from repeating the same mistakes by building a new plant." The plant makes and procures 85 percent of the contents of U.S. nuclear warheads, including the firing sets, aiming devices and casings that carry fissile materials. ...

"The new bomb plant will make millions of dollars for a few, get the workers sick, pollute the land and build weapons of mass destruction; meanwhile, our school are crumbling and being closed," said Ann Suellentrop of Kansas City, Kan., nurse and lead organizer for opposition to the current and new Kansas City Plant. "You can't build nuclear weapons and not get sick."

Several federal agencies are now investigating contaminants at the current plant. The local NBC affiliate lists about 350 persons who have reported serious illnesses from working at the plant, plus about 30 persons whose families say they died from illnesses caused by toxins at the plant. ...

Full article