Noack Law Office
Free Initial Consultations
952-467-8481
800-881-9262

Meat processing often dangerous in a secretive industry

Working conditions in the meat industry can be dangerous and workers suffer many more injuries and illnesses than workers in many other fields. Also, journalists and even government agencies have found it difficult to gather information they believe the public deserves about the industry’s treatment of its workers.

This situation might surprise some Americans. A 1906 novel about the meat industry may still be the most important investigative journalism in history and is still read in many schools. The Jungle shocked America with details of immigrant workers in dangerous and disgusting working conditions in Chicago’s animal slaughterhouses and meat processing plants.

After 113 years, meat processing is still unusually dangerous, and information about the industry is still unusually secretive.

Workers not encouraged to speak up

Federal agencies including the General Accounting Office (GAO) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) keep an eye on working conditions, including in the meat industry. During a detailed investigation, the GAO sometimes found actual conditions did not match the data provided by the industry.

Workers in the plants are often immigrants or refugees forced to escape the country of their birth, much like in 1905 when The Jungle was written. Fear of being fired or even deported sometimes keep workers from reporting injuries or admitting how serious they are. Safety training are sometimes given in English only.

Injuries suffered by workers who, technically, had been hired by third-party contractors are sometimes not reported to the government. Examples even included workers who had lost fingers, arms or legs while cleaning dangerous machines.

Some meat plants have their own medical clinics, and these sometimes tell workers to return to work without proper treatment. The GAO noted one worker who reported pain 90 separate times before finally being sent to a doctor.

Even giving the obstacles to reporting the facts, the official Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers show health problems among meat packing workers at a rate well over twice the national average. Serious injuries causing lost days of work are 3 times more common than in American industries in general.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Testimonials

Testimonials

A quick note to say thanks for your efforts in obtaining social security disability benefits for me.....My "life's journey" has had its bumps in the road, but things are starting to fall into place. - Satisfied client

Read More

Free Consultation | There Is Never A Fee Unless We Win

Our firm represents workers in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area and throughout the state of Minnesota. We will do depositions in your hometown, wherever that may be.

Contact Noack Law Office today at 952-467-8481 for a free consultation about your case. As our client, you do not have to worry about out-of-pocket expenses. You will not pay any fees unless and until you receive benefits.

Email Us For A Response

Questions? We Have Answers.

Contact the Firm

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Mound Office
4165 Shoreline Drive, Suite 20
Mound, MN 55384

Mound Law Office Map

Minneapolis Office
1515 East Lake Street
Suite 200
Mercado Central
Minneapolis, MN 55407

Minneapolis Law Office Map

St. Paul Office
925 Payne Avenue
Suite 201
La Plaza Latina
St. Paul, MN 55130

St. Paul Law Office Map