ADVISORY: Human rights advocates, former meatpacking, poultry workers to testify on human rights abuses


March 20, 2014

Contact: Apreill Hartsfield, Southern Poverty Law Center, (334) 782-6624;

Jeff Sheldon, Nebraska Appleseed, (402) 438-8853(402) 840-7289;

Meat and Poultry Workers to Testify at Inter-American Commission on Human Rights Hearing

Tuesday, March 25 – A coalition of civil rights groups and meat and poultry workers will testify before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) to describe how the U.S. government has failed to protect meat and poultry workers by allowing dangerously fast work speeds that cause crippling injuries. The group will testify that the industry is allowed to violate workers’ human rights with impunity and will call on the U.S. government to enact work speed protections and oppose the dangerous rule proposed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) that would increase poultry line speeds.

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack has been invited to attend the hearing.

WHO: Tom Fritzsche, staff attorney for the Southern Poverty Law Center

Omaid Zabih, staff attorney for Nebraska Appleseed Center for Law in the Public Interest

Liz Borkowski, MPH, researcher, Department of Environmental & Occupational Health, Milken Institute School of Public Health, The George Washington University

Teresa, former meatpacking plant worker from Nebraska

Gwen, former poultry plant worker from Kentucky

Juan, former meatpacking plant worker from Nebraska

Lee Pearl Duff, mother of slain poultry plant worker from Mississippi


WHEN:                       Tuesday, March 25

                                     10:15 a.m. (EDT)

WHERE:                    Organization of American States

1889 F St. N.W.

Washington, DC

IACHR – Padilha Vidal Room (TL Level)


NOTE:  IACHR hearings are open to the public and members of the media. For more information please visit

** Requests for interviews with coalition members and workers should be made to Apreill Hartsfield at (334) 782-6624 or**

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