Guestworkers to Launch Hungerstrike for Dignity

In late 2006, over 500 Indian workers mortgaged their futures for an American dream, paying $20,000 apiece for false promises of green cards from US and Indian recruiters. Instead they received guestworker visa and arrived to an American nightmare at Gulf Coast marine construction company Signal International. Signal forced them to live 24 men to a trailer and charged them $1,050 a month for it.rnrn“At a time when 30 percent of New Orleans workers were looking for work, the government suspended a law that made it illegal to hire undocumented workers,” said organizer Saket Soni of the New Orleans Workers Center for Racial Justice. “The guestworker program is designed to control labor. It sanctions sanction forced labor by migrants and further disenfranchise the most vulnerable American workers.” rnrnThis Wednesday Signal guestworkers will launch an indefinite hungerstrike to call on the Department of Justice to prosecute Signal International and on Congress to hold hearings on guest workers in the post-Katrina Gulf Coast. This hungerstrike comes on the heels of a nationwide workers tour organized by the New Orleans Worker Center for Racial Justice with support from Jobs with Justice. rnrnJoin them at the launch on Wednesday, May 14th, 10:00am at Lafayette Park. For questions contact Rcastel@dclabor.org.rnrnClick here to pledge to support these workers.

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