Farmworkers & Working Conditions
Farm work is hard work. Workers often put in 14 hour days in bad weather - including extreme heat and rain. In NC, 7 farmworkers died of heat stroke in five years. They were literally worked to death. Heat stroke isn't the only problem in the fields.
Employers with 10 or fewer workers aren't required to provide toilets or clean water during the work day. And some employers ignore the regulations altogether, putting workers at risk. Workers have had to drink water from ponds containing pesticides when there is no other water source.
A quarter of tobacco workers experiences nicotine poisoning through the skin at least once in a growing season. In just one day, workers can absorb the amount of nicotine found in 36 cigarettes.
Read more about working conditions in the groundbreaking report, Close to Slavery.
The workers who put food on our tables have paid for it with sweat, blood, and sometimes their lives. Farmworkers do some of the most dangerous work in the country, but they don't have the same protections as everybody else. We need to prevent more deaths from happening in North Carolina's fields.
We need a harvest of dignity instead of exploitation. Because people who work hard should be treated fairly. It's that simple.