August 11, 2016

UFCW Applauds OSHA for Standing Up for Poultry Workers

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On July 27, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued citations to Pilgrim’s Pride for nearly two dozen safety and health hazards, including the failure to make medical referrals for workers with workplace injuries in a timely manner. This is the first time a poultry company has been cited for medical mismanagement of work-related injuries.

The UFCW issued the following statement in response to the citations:

“We are disappointed to see yet another example of poultry workers being mistreated and forced to endure harsh working conditions,” said UFCW International President Marc Perrone. “Unions provide poultry workers with one of the best ways to improve their safety on the job because we create an environment where people know their rights and feel empowered to speak up. We make sure that workers can advocate for their well-being without the fear of being fired. As we strive to improve poultry industry jobs, we applaud OSHA for actively supporting the right of every worker to have a safe workplace.”

1 Comment
  • Michael Snell-Feikema, October 24, 2017 Reply

    I am currently involved in coordinating and building community support for an effort to unionize the poultry workers in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia. The organizing effort is supported by Local 400, UFCW. We really need more materials, on all levels, for handing out to workers and the community, that explain, in detail, precisely how the lives of poultry workers that have unionized has improved. A big problem here in the poultry plants is the way injured workers get treated by the company nurse. The companies have a system that enables them to escape responsibility for worker's injuries. It begins with refusing, as much as possible to accept the worker's statements of fact that the injury is work related. Workers have a difficult time getting the workmen's compensation they are owed as well. Many workers ended up getting fired because they are injured. It is the "disposable worker model" in spades. How does having a union help workers with these problems? Has any research been done that compares union and nonunion plants in respect to these and other issues. Any help with this is appreciated!


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