Plant charged with child labor violations

Sept. 9, 2008 at 9:32 PM
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POSTVILLE, Iowa, Sept. 9 (UPI) -- The owner and managers of the Agriprocessors meatpacking plant have been charged with thousands of child labor law violations, Iowa officials said Tuesday.

Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller said there were more than 9,000 violations of Iowa's child labor law at the company's plant in Postville, Iowa, Legal Newsline reported.

The alleged incidents occurred from Sept. 9, 2007, to May 12, 2008, when the plant was raided by federal immigration authorities, he said.

The children working in the kosher packing plant were exposed to dry ice and chlorine solutions and minors were operating such heavy machinery as conveyor belts, meat grinders and circular saws, the attorney general's office said.

The Des Moines (Iowa) Register reported that the company said it intends to fight some of the 31 alleged violations of workplace safety regulations for which it was recently cited.

A spokeswoman said the violations are for minor infractions, the newspaper reported.

"Eight of the alleged violations relate to one extension cord," said Menachem Lubinsky, an Agriprocessors consultant.

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