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    "The fight is never about grapes or lettuce. It is always about people."
    Cesar Chavez




    :: Tuesday, February 12, 2008 ::

    Protect food and farmworkers - Guest commentary, MontereyHerald.com
    First, some packing sheds now use higher levels of chlorine or different kinds of disinfectants to clean the produce and equipment. Some of these substances are sickening workers. More oversight is needed to ensure that chlorine and other disinfectants are used according to safety directions, and always with adequate ventilation.

    Farmworkers and packing shed workers need to be trained in recognizing and reporting symptoms of overexposure. Worker complaints must be properly investigated and resolved. California Rural Legal Assistance has received numerous reports from workers who were retaliated against by their agricultural employers for reporting health and safety violations, and this must stop immediately. California law grants every employee the right to a "safe and healthful" workplace. This right must be respected, even in the face of an E. coli scare.
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