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BP Hires Prison Labor to Clean Up Spill While Coastal Residents Struggle

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posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 07:30 PM

In the first few days after BP's Deepwater Horizon wellhead exploded, spewing crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico, cleanup workers could be seen on Louisiana beaches wearing scarlet pants and white t-shirts with the words "Inmate Labor" printed in large red block letters. Coastal residents, many of whom had just seen their livelihoods disappear, expressed outrage at community meetings; why should BP be using cheap or free prison labor when so many people were desperate for work? The outfits disappeared overnight.

Work crews in Grand Isle, Louisiana, still stand out. In a region where nine out of ten residents are white, the cleanup workers are almost exclusively African-American men. The racialized nature of the cleanup is so conspicuous that Ben Jealous, the president of the NAACP, sent a public letter to BP CEO Tony Hayward on July 9, demanding to know why black people were over-represented in "the most physically difficult, lowest paying jobs, with the most significant exposure to toxins."

Hiring prison labor is more than a way for BP to save money while cleaning up the biggest oil spill in history. By tapping into the inmate workforce, the company and its subcontractors get workers who are not only cheap but easily silenced—and they get lucrative tax write-offs in the process.

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

Just one more outrageous thing done by BP. If there was a playbook on how to screw the public, BP would surely be going by that book. It seems like everything they are doing, is screwing the American public, particularly that of the Gulf Coast.

What's even more crazy is that in addition to BP saving money while stiffing the public, the owners of the prisons are probably making a fortune from the "deal" as well. I want to know how much these prison contracts are worth, and who is ultimately profiting, besides BP.


posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 07:49 PM
Well, do you want everyone living in the Gulf area, dying from cleaning up the disaster that has already done so much harm to them?

The area should be sectioned off, the people treated well with food and water, while clean up crews clean it up.

Though not possible because people believe we can't just do things to help people, and that we need someone's permission to spend the money? that no one should be caring about because its a disaster..?

posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 08:09 PM
reply to post by airspoon

I think this is a great idea! instead of having inmates in prinson using up taxpayer money they can contribute alittle bit to society, think of it as us paying them to work, we give them food, shelter, clothing and they just sit in a cell all day now they can be put to use.

posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 08:13 PM
if they used Gulf residents, then people would complain they were poisoning the residents of the Gulf region.

If they use prisoners, people complain about 'slave labor'

if they import people some will complain about immigrants stealing jobs.

if they hire locals, the unions might complain.

if they hire union workers, the right wing will complain (and nothing will get done)...

and so it goes...

posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 08:14 PM
The problem is, that many people are completely out of work and large fraction of those people are actually out of work because of the spill itself. I know we hear stories of shrimp boats and other fishing boats who are hired by BP to skim, but those are only the boat owners and not the support industry who are being hired. If you were an oyster shucker, you are out of a job. If you were in any kind of support or tourist industry, you are now out of a job.

The people should be hired first, not prisoners and what's even more disgusting, is that the owners of these prisons, are probably making all of the profits, after they already profit from sending otherwise non-criminals to prison.


posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 08:16 PM
reply to post by airspoon

yes, but as i just said, if they hire the locals, and the locals inevitably get sick, then that doesnt exactly benefit the residents, does it?

I agree that using prison labor is sketchy, at best. I just dont think anyone BP hires will make everyone happy. And whoever they hire will be putting their health at risk, so i personally find your criticism a bit misguided.

clearly, nothin g they do will please everyone.

[edit on 23-7-2010 by justadood]

posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 08:22 PM
reply to post by justadood

Then you make sure that your clean-up workers have the proper safety equipment. It's not that unreasonable. In fact, there were many instances in which BP wasn't allowing people on the gulf to wear respirators. If someone wore a respirator, they would be sent somewhere else.

It's real easy actually and not unreasonable at all. You hire the people whose life you ruined and then you ensure that they are properly equipped.

They should be doing the same thing for prisoners. They should also be insuring that the prisoners have access to the proper safety equipment as well. The prisoners are people too and chance are, if they are outside the prison walls, cleaning the oil, then their crimes most likely aren't bad and I would even venture to suggest that many if not most, are in the can for so-called victimless crimes, which would mean that they aren't criminals in the first place.

The moral of the story is that nobody should be getting sick while cleaning up BP's mess, not prisoners or citizens. There really isn't an excuse for it at all. Furthermore, BP should be hiring the people that they ruined, instead of trying to save money and enrich fat cats who already rape society.


posted on Jul, 23 2010 @ 08:27 PM

Its a relief that you have it all worked out and put into a nice, neat package.

Clearly, someone should place you in charge.

You have far more specific answers than i have for what seems to be a complex situation, thats for sure. Good for you! I'm not sure i envy your ability to make such simplifications, but it will certainly gain you stars and flags.

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