This weekend, at airports across the country, people protested President Trump’s executive order on immigration, which temporarily bars citizens from seven countries, as well as all refugees, from entering the United States.
During the protests at PDX, we balanced the need to keep the airport open, keep passengers and employees safe, and still allow people a place to express their views.
The protest on Saturday was largely peaceful; the protest on Sunday had a large peaceful contingent, though there was one incident of violence that caused our police team to take action to assist a man who was apparently assaulted by protesters.
PDX has an active Free Speech Permit process for individuals and groups wishing to exercise their First Amendment rights. Individuals and organizations frequently obtain permits to express their viewpoints and/or hand out religious materials. Ideally, those who wish to exercise their right to free speech at the airport would contact us in advance. (Please PM this page directly to request information on the permit process.)
Advance notice didn’t happen with the protest activities this past weekend. Nonetheless, we managed the unexpected crowds, keeping employee and traveler safety and operational needs in mind. Without question, it was a dynamic and fluid situation that required creativity and flexibility in accommodating many needs.
We appreciate all who have shared their thoughts, worries, thanks and sincere concerns. Providing safe access to PDX for passengers and employees continues to be our primary objective.