The Ashdod Port union embarked on an unannounced strike Sunday, as the union’s embattled chief Alon Hassan and union secretary Avinoam Shushan were called for a disciplinary hearing.
The union said the port’s management had breached employment and wage agreements when they installed a new anti-nepotism policy banning union members’ relatives from being hired at the port.
The strike would cost NIS 2-3 million a day, according to Ashdod Port director Itzik Bloomenthal, who vowed not to pay wages for missed work. Two ships were prevented from docking, and 13 more could not unload their cargo.
Hassan and Shushan’s disciplinary hearing was over unauthorized positions outside the port, including local political positions. Last year, Hassan briefly left his position over a corruption scandal, in which he allegedly profited after using his influence to get contracts for companies in which he held a stake.
Hassan also recently made his way into headlines for lashing out against a detractor on Facebook with an anti-gay slur.
The Histadrut Labor Federation laid the blame for the strike at the port management’s feet, saying that manufacturers who could not get their products ahead of the Passover holiday should blame them.