facebook pixel
ffac festive logo

Standing in Solidarity with Workers in Meat Processing Plants

Last week, President Trump issued an executive order banning governors from closing meat processing plants, declaring them “critical infrastructure.” Meat-processing plants around the US have been hotspots for the novel coronavirus. Over 5,000 workers have tested positive for COVID-19 and at least 20 have died. As a result, many workers are required to work longer and more frequent shifts.

The League of United Latin American Citizens, (LULAC), with more than 60 million members nationwide, along with a coalition of workers, community groups, and elected officials, is supporting a Meatless May Mondays campaign to draw attention to the deplorable conditions meat workers are facing. FFAC stands in solidarity with LULAC and the workers.

Workers in meatpacking facilities, who held some of the country’s most dangerous jobs before the pandemic, are now forced to work without safeguards, including physical distancing policies, personal protective equipment (PPE), and paid sick leave.

These are people who need to work and who don’t have options. Most are poor, uneducated, and foreign-born. Half lack legal authorization to work in the US. They’re desperate for any work they can get and willing to endure horrific conditions.

Factory farm workers routinely inhale hazardous levels of ammonia and hydrogen sulfide and particulate matter from feces, feed, and fur or feathers. Seventy percent suffer from respiratory illness. Due to the incredibly fast-paced and repetitive nature of the work, workers in meat processing plants are seven times more likely than their counterparts in other private industries to suffer from painful cumulative trauma disorders. As well, there are at least 17 severe injuries a month in US meat plants. These include amputations, broken bones, and head trauma. Most of these workers don’t have health insurance or worker’s compensation, so when they get hurt and can no longer work, they’re on their own.

Every time we purchase meat, dairy, or eggs at a supermarket or restaurant, we’re supporting an industry that flagrantly disregards workers’ rights.

By reducing or eliminating our consumption of meat, dairy, and eggs, we can help put an end to this abusive industry.

Please join us in supporting Meatless May Mondays.

Amy Halpern-Laff is the Director of Strategic Partnerships for FFAC.

Sharing this article helps raise awareness about the impact of factory farming on humans, animals, and the environment.

Related Posts

Using Indigenous Farming Practices to Combat Factory Farming

It is evident that the mass production of food has negatively impacted our natural environment, but the question now is what do we do about it?
October 13, 2021
Read More

The Silent Victims of Animal Agriculture: Pregnant Farmworkers

In the United States, farm work is one of the top 10 most dangerous jobs. With women making up 25.5% of this work force, the occupational hazards exclusive to women's health is important to be aware of.
October 20, 2021
Read More

Factory Farming is a Feminist Issue (Part II)

The expectation and representation of eating habits for men in Westernized culture contributes to the growing consumption of meat across the nation.
Read More
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram