Jul. 20th, 2011

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hamlet_chicken_processing_plant_fire Terrifying incident where 25 factory workers died because the fire doors were locked because the owners had wanted to prevent theft. This despite there having been previous fires.

"There were 90 employees in the facility at the time of the fire, which began when a 25 foot (7.6 m) long deep fat fryer vat may have spontaneously ignited at around 8:30 AM"

Also the owner . . .

"Emmett J. Roe, owner of Imperial Foods Products Inc.; his son Brad, who was operations manager for the company; and plant manager James N. Hair surrendered on March 13, 1992, and were charged with non-negligent manslaughter.[14] There was no trial. On September 15, 1992, owner Emmett Roe pleaded guilty to 25 counts of involuntary manslaughter. No one else was found guilty. Emmett Roe had personally ordered the doors to be locked from the outside.[dead link][4][15] He received a prison sentence of 19 years and 11 months.[6][16][dead link][15] The sentence was unpopular among many of the workers and their families who point out that it amounts to less than a year for each dead person.[dead link][15] Roe became eligible for parole in March 1994, and was released just under four years into his sentence."

Now I think Madoff deserved the prison term he got even without being responsible for mass death so why did a man actually responsible for 25 deaths serve only 4 years?

So being concerned about food and how it's made really isn't just about being snooty about how flavor hits the tongue. We also have to be concerned about the people who make our dinner possible, who often work in hazardous, dirty and poorly paid positions. Even if it's only because people who feel safe when it comes to questioning their working conditions create a situation where our food can be made safer as well.



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