Last May’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raid of kosher meatpacking plant Agriprocessors in Postville, IA, not only found that nearly half the employees at Agriprocessors were found to be illegal immigrants, and 20 of the 389 who were rounded up were under-age – some as young as 13-years old, reports The New York Times:

[I]n the aftermath of the arrests, labor investigators have reaped a bounty of new evidence from the testimony of illegal immigrants, teenagers and adults, who were caught in the raid. In formal declarations, immigrants have described pervasive labor violations at the plant, testimony that could result in criminal charges for Agriprocessors executives, labor law experts said. … 

Because of the dangers of the work, it is illegal in Iowa for a company to employ anyone under 18 on the floor of a meatpacking plant.

In a statement, Agriprocessors said it did not employ workers under 18, and would fire any under-age worker found to have presented false documents to obtain work. 

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and other agencies are also looking into complaints that “female employees … were offered promotions in exchange for sexual favors,” reports New York Magazine, as well as allegations that the plant housed a methamphetamine lab. 

The immigrants may also sue under the Fair Labor Standards Act for wage and hour violations. According to an affidavit  by Elmer L., an illegal alien from Guatemala who said he was 16 years old when he started working at the plant: he regularly worked 17 hours a day, with no breaks; he made $7.25 an hour, but was not routinely paid overtime; he only had time to work and sleep, and felt like he was “a slave.” Elmer L. also said, “They told us they were going to call immigration if we complained.” 

After learning of these egregious labor – and human rights – abuses, Reps. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), Albio Sires (D-NJ) and Joe Baca (D-CA), members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus who went to Postville on a “fact finding” tour, were horrified. Sires said, “We don’t want it to ever happen again.” 

But he didn’t mean: “We don’t want employers ever again to hire illegal aliens so they can abuse them, knowing they are too afraid to go to the authorities.” He meant: “We don’t ever want ICE to investigate and raid a workplace known to break immigration law, no matter what else is going on in there.”   

Just as liberals don’t get that a drug dealer will not scruple to obey gun control laws, The Wall Street Journal, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the ACLU, Hispanic activists and other other pro-illegal immigration shills don’t understand that employers who knowingly hire forged documented aliens will not scruple to obey other labor laws. The only way to uncover abuses such as those allegedly occurring at Agriprocessors – which are tantamount to indentured servitude – is to keep raiding workplaces suspected of immigration law violations.

Note: The Stiletto writes about politics and other stuff at The Stiletto Blog, chosen an Official Honoree in the Political Blogs category by the judges of the 12th Annual Webby Awards (the Oscars of the online universe) along with CNN Political Ticker, Swampland (Time magazine) and The Caucus (The New York Times).

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