View Full Version : 2 farm workers sue over alleged discrimination

10-01-2010, 08:12 AM
EUGENE, Ore. — Two tree farm workers who are indigenous people from southern Mexico have sued their Oregon employer, alleging that their Mexican supervisor discriminated against them with verbal abuse and sexual harassment. “This case is unusual in highlighting the vulnerabilities of a minority-within-a-minority, the indigenous Mixtec population,” said William R. Tamayo, the regional attorney for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission office in San Francisco, which filed the complaint in federal court in Eugene on the workers’ behalf.
EEOC attorney May Che said discrimination in Mexico against indigenous people is common. The language and culture of the indigenous people predates the Spanish conquest by hundreds of years.
The complaint seeks monetary damages, training on anti-discrimination laws at Holiday Specialtrees tree farm in Woodburn, and information to prevent future discrimination.
Holiday Specialtrees’ website says the company farms 2,200 acres with 3 million Christmas trees in production. It ships trees throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico and overseas.
The company declined to comment on the lawsuit, The Oregonian reported.
According to the EEOC complaint, the supervisor at the tree farm allegedly assaulted one of the employees, groped him several times and made degrading comments. The supervisor also is accused of forbidding them to use their native language because he said it sounded ugly.

The behavior escalated to threats of physical violence and sexual harassment, Che said, and the workers alleged that the company did nothing to stop the abuse.
Che promised the EEOC would aggressively go after employers who fail to take appropriate action against harassment, especially where workers are so susceptible to attack.
Luis Lucero of the EEOC’s Seattle field office, which is overseeing the case, said Holiday Specialtrees failed to conduct an adequate investigation and basically swept the issue under the rug.
“Business-savvy employers should have policies in place for dealing with incidents like this, or risk being in violation of federal laws,” Lucero said.

Read more: http://www.statesmanjournal.com/article/20101001/UPDATE/100930050?GID=0#Scene_1#ixzz117W4R8aP

10-01-2010, 08:34 AM
This highlights one of the problems associated with cheap imported labor. While mistreatment of workers is reprehensible, the US taxpayer ends up paying to educate foreigners about our culture and laws, and the ones that do the mistreating are now imports as well. Oregon has a huge unemployment problem. There should be no reason for a farm to be importing people from mexico right now, and especially this close to christmas

10-01-2010, 09:49 AM
Yes, many things are not discussed in this piece. During all of this abuse, how much of it involved the use of the English language? What was the immigration status of the alleged victims? Remember that one of the leverage points applied by illegals is victimhood of some kind. So they might be illegals who are begging victimhood. Who hired them? If they were in the country legally, it needs to be pointed out that, most likely, the hiring was done entirely in Spanish. Why should green cards be issued to anyone who does not speak English? There are no proper arguments to made for expressing a need for labor in this country that does not speak English.

10-02-2010, 05:35 AM
...indigenous people from southern Mexico...

...indigenous Mixtec population...

...discrimination in Mexico against indigenous people is common. The language and culture of the indigenous people predates the Spanish conquest by hundreds of years...

It's true, regardless of how rosy "Latino activists" describe Mexican culture yet in which to be Indian is to be an outcast.

How many times must the word "indigenous" be gratuituosly tossed in to make a point?

I have a picture of a sign I took outside an establishment right next to the Columbia River in Oregon I wish I knew how to insert:

It says