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RWDSU Denounces ICE Arrest of 146 Meatpacking Workers

June 22, 2018

By Steve Wishnia and Neal Tepel

SALEM, Ohio—Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents arrested 146 workers at a Northeast Ohio meatpacking plant June 19, in a raid that Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union President Stuart Appelbaum called “unconscionable.” “We are outraged by the actions of Donald Trump,” Appelbaum said in a statement. “140 people couldn’t go home to their families last night, and their children were left on their own to fend for themselves.” ICE agents searched four of the Fresh Mark company’s facilities in the region, but only made arrests at the one in Salem. ICE says the detainees are being held at facilities in Ohio and Michigan. The Fresh Mark plant is the largest employer in Salem, a town of 12,000 people southwest of Youngstown. Most of the detainees were Guatemalan immigrants, who have helped Salem recover from the recession, Mayor John Berlin told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. The RWDSU, which represents workers at the plant, told WFMJ-TV in Youngstown that it had sent staffers there. “Our union will not stand for violence against immigrants,” Appelbaum said. “We will not stand for tearing families apart, and we will not stand for the terrifying tactics of the Trump Administration.” Read more

June 22, 2018

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