Tag archives for USDA
USDA continues to insist that worker safety concerns are OSHA’s responsibility, even in the face of overwhelming evidence that its proposed rule to “modernize” poultry slaughter inspection with dizzying line speeds will injure workers.
Some USDA meat and poultry inspectors work many hours of overtime. USDA insists it doesn’t affect their critical food safety responsibilities.
The USDA Secretary tells Congress that his agency still plans to implement a new poultry slaughter inspection system that will allow producers to drastically increase line speeds, while a disturbing new report on poultry workers in Alabama explain the harmful effects of the current working conditions.
The Southern Poverty Law Center and Alabama Appleseed interviewed 300 Alabama poultry workers, and find that many have musculoskeletal problems linked to fast-moving processing lines. That problem could get even worse if a proposed USDA poultry rule to increase maximum line speeds takes effect.
The Obama Administration’s quest to appease businesses’ claims about burdensome regulations awoke a giant in the form of the civil rights, public health and workers’ safety communities. From the Southern Poverty Law Center and the National Council of LaRaza, to the American Public Health Association, the feedback on USDA’s proposal to “modernize” the poultry inspection process is loud and clear: scrap the idea because faster line speeds will take a grave toll on poultry plant workers. (Re-post)
McClatchy Newspapers’ reporter Lindsay Wise reports in two new articles on a proposed USDA rule to allegedly “modernize” the poultry inspection process. USDA and the poultry industry are having a love fest over the proposal, but food safety and workers’ safety advocates oppose the rule. The White House will soon be deciding the rule’s fate.
The turkey pardoned by the President was headed for a slaughterhouse with a history of food safety violations such as fecal contamination. Surprisingly, the USDA considers it a model for a modernized, streamlined inspection system.
An animation created by the Coalition for Sensible Safeguards shows us the speed at which the USDA is proposing for its inspectors to find fecal contamination on poultry carcasses.
The nation’s largest Hispanic civil rights organization issued an action alert to its members urging them to tell USDA Secretary Vilsack to withdraw a proposed rule that would allow poultry plant operators to increase assembly line speeds to 175 birds per minute. The majority of employees in poultry processing are Hispanic or other vulnerable workers.
Gabriel Thompson writes today in The Nation about a summer job he had a few years back, working on the assembly line at a Pilgrim’s Pride poultry plant in Alabama. The chickens flew by on hooks at 90 birds-per-minute as he sliced and cut the meat non-stop. It didn’t take long for him to meet…