Update On EPA & Worker Woes
A farm labor contractor is liable for nearly $7.7 million dollars as a result of violating workers rights. The contractor, Global Horizons Inc. is accused of hiring impoverished Thai workers believing they would be more manageable and less likely to complain. On Tuesday, a judge entered a default judgement against the company and co-defendants, Green Acre Farms of Yakima Valley and Valley Fruit Orchards of Royal City. Some 67 Thai workers suffered discrimination, harassment, threats of financial ruin, arrest and other mistreatment.
The EPA has yet to respond after 145 House members signed a letter criticizing the agency over the misuses of funds for a website and billboard campaign. Washington's Representative Dan Newhouse says they are waiting.
NEWHOUSE: We're still in a waiting pattern to get back the Agriculture Committee for an official response. So not a lot has changed after sending out the letter just a few days ago but certainly getting a lot of attention around the area - around the country and I appreciate that attention because one of the jobs I take very seriously is holding federal agencies accountable and in this case I think it was very appropriate that we pointed out an action by EPA that looks to me to be clearly in violation of the law.
That's today's Northwest Report. I'm Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network of the West.