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Contractor Receives Record Fine For Worker's Death (pregnant teen denied access to shade and water)

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Kadie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 06:26 PM
Original message
Contractor Receives Record Fine For Worker's Death (pregnant teen denied access to shade and water)
Jul 23, 2008 4:02 pm US/Pacific

Contractor Receives Record Fine For Worker's Death


FRESNO (AP) ― The company that hired a pregnant teen who died of heat stroke this spring after working in a Central Valley vineyard has been hit with the highest fine ever issued to a California farm labor contractor.

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health fined Merced Farm Labor $262,700 Wednesday afternoon for violating eight workplace safety requirements.

State authorities believe 17-year-old Maria Isabel Vasquez Jimenez died because the company denied her access to shade and water as she pruned wine grapes in nearly triple-digit heat.

Inspectors also found the company deliberately neglected to train workers on how to protect themselves from heat illness.

http://cbs13.com/local/labor.contractor.fine.2.778577.h...

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ColbertWatcher Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 06:29 PM
Response to Original message
1. I hope that fine makes them think...
...and doesn't get "Exxoned" to an amount so low they can sneeze, pay for it and see no reason to stop their negligence.


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RC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 06:35 PM
Response to Original message
2. The Company got fined?!!
How about a man slaughter charge or two or three instead!!!
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 08:30 PM
Response to Reply #2
9. Seems like that's the only thing that would create any real
change.

Fines are just the "cost of doing business" as I'm sure this poor dead teen was... "collateral damage" in a civic sense.
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tbyg52 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Jul-24-08 04:19 PM
Response to Reply #2
14. Really.
If all that's going to happen is the fine, I wonder how much it is as a percentage of their profits?
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Diane R Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 06:51 PM
Response to Original message
3. That was not a 'worker' death, that was murder. It needs a criminal charge.
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dipsydoodle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 06:52 PM
Response to Original message
4. Sounds more like a case
of corporate manslaughter to me. x( I think that's how it would be treated in the UK.
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wain Donating Member (803 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 06:56 PM
Response to Original message
5. Again, the laborer is the loser
The state gets the fine money. For what purpose is it used? How about the girl's family? What do they get? The company probably deducts the fine from taxes it would otherwise pay. And no criminal charges? It's all a bad joke. On us.
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 06:59 PM
Response to Original message
6. This fine will never be paid. Bookmarking. n/t
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indepat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 07:06 PM
Response to Original message
7. Violate copyright laws by recording a $15 DVD and get a $250,000 fine and five years in
prison: callously and reckless take a life, or was it two, and get slapped on the wrist in comparison. :grr: :mad:
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BuelahWitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 07:11 PM
Response to Original message
8. Where are the pro-lifers? They need to get in on this too.
It killed her unborn child.
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tyedyeto Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 08:39 PM
Response to Reply #8
10. You will not hear from any pro-lifers about this tragedy....
they only care that she stays pregnant, but her life is of small concern to them.

If that baby had been born, they would have shoved said child under the bus as well.
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annm4peace Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:05 PM
Response to Original message
11. Where does your food come from ? WAKE UP !
Think of this poor girl when you drink your wine.

There are other workers who have died, and who will die. Many of these large farming operations DO NOT GIVE A CRAP about the worker's lives !

check out and if you can support the United Farm Worker's Union. Any little bit helps.

Also get their action alert emails to know if you are buying from a company that isn't treating workers fairly.

http://www.ufw.org /


Ramiro Carrillo Rodriguez was the fourth farm worker in the last two weeks to die of heat stroke....And the second this week alone!
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BuddhaGirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 10:26 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. what winery does this vineyard supply to???
n/t
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annm4peace Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jul-23-08 11:58 PM
Response to Reply #11
13. Maria worked for Merced Farm Labor Contractor
Edited on Wed Jul-23-08 11:59 PM by annm4peace
I urge you to call on senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein to demand justice for Maria Isabel and her unborn child by; demanding regulations for the rights of farmworkers (FOR DOCUMENTED AND UNDOCUMENTED WORKERS ALIKE) in the form of fair wages, water breaks, and access to shade; demanding that Merced Farm Labor be held accountable for the death of Maria Isabel and her unborn child. It is not enough for Merced Farm Labor to be simply slapped on the wrist with a fine for these deaths. Maria Isabel and her child were human beings, and the law should be extended accordingly.

Barbara Boxer's contact info: 112 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, DC 20510. Tel: 202-224-3553. Fax: 202-224-0454.

Dianne Feinstein's contact info: 331 Hart Senate Office Building, Washington, DC 20510. Tel: 202-224-3841. Fax: 202-228-3954.

Maria Isabel, who was two months pregnant, was working for Merced Farm Labor in a vineyard owned by West Coast Grape Farming. Her body temperature was 108.4 degrees when she was finally taken to a hospital nearly two hours after she collapsed.

West Coast Grape Farming Inc. provides grapes to Bronco Wines, one of the biggest wine companies in the United States. The company gained fame in recent years with its low-cost Charles Shaw wines known as "Two-Buck Chuck."
Sold at Trader Joes
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