U.S. Charges Farm Companies with Human Labor Trafficking
The US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced Wednesday that it was filing charges against two companies accused of exploiting hundreds of Indian and Thai employees, human trafficking victims forced to toil for next to nothing and live in appalling conditions.
According to Agence France-Presse, it is the largest-ever human trafficking case in the US agricultural sector.
The EEOC alleges that Global Horizons brought 200 Thai men to Hawaii and Washington state, charging them exorbitant recruitment fees in exchange for what they were told would be high-paying jobs. But when they arrived in the United States, they were forced to work for a pittance while living in crowded quarters infested with rats and insects. The men were subject to verbal and physical abuse as well, stripped of their passports and kept in strict segregation from non-Thai workers.
In addition, federal authorities are suing the companies running the farms where the trafficked men worked. They “not only ignored abuses but also participated in the obvious mistreatment, intimidation, harassment and unequal pay of the Thai workers,” a statement said. Agence France-Presse lists the companies as: Captain Cook Coffee Co., Del Monte Fresh Produce, Kauai Coffee Co., Kelena Farms, MacFarms of Hawaii, Maui Pineapple Farms, Green Acre Farms, and Valley Fruit Orchards.
Tagged asian workers exploited on u.s. farms, captain cook coffee co, del monte fresh produce, eeoc, exploitation of asian agricultural workers in hawaii, global horizons, global horizons human trafficking, green acre farms, human labor trafficking, human labor trafficking in america, human trafficking, indian and thai workers exploited on u.s. farms, indian workers exploited on u.s. farms, kauai coffee co, kelena farms, macfarms of hawaii, maui pineapple farms, thai workers exploited on u.s. farms, US equal employment opportunity commission, valley fruit orchards