650,000 farm workers face a daily risk of death and illness from toiling in stifling summer heat. Six died last year and fifteen farm workers have died of heat-related complications since July 2004.
The United Farmworkers Unions and ACLU have filed a lawsuit against the state and its Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (Cal/OSHA) for failing to live up to their constitutional and statutory duties to protect the safety of farm workers. See NY Times: Farm Workers’ Union Sues California Agency Over Rules on Heat Safety
“If hundreds of thousands of white-collar employees had to work under dangerous and life-threatening conditions, the state would almost certainly take immediate action to protect their health and safety,” said David Blair-Loy, legal director for the ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties. “Low-income farm workers, who are overwhelmingly Latino, deserve no less.”
“The people who feed us should not fear death when they go to work”
UFW President Arturo S. Rodriguez
More, after the fold.
(Also on dkos: http://www.dailykos.com/story/… )