Heat Illness Deaths in California,TRUST Act Moves Forward, and Immigration in the Media, 6/4-6/13

14 Jun
99 Calor Heat Illness Social Marketing Campaign

Heat Illness Prevention Campaign from CAL/OSHA 99calor.org

Two California laborers die from heat-illness
Heat-illness is entirely preventable with proper hydration and shaded rest. In many sectors, these safe workplace norms are not guaranteed, and recently it led to the deaths of two more laborers in California. Maximo Lopez Barajas was working in a pomegranate field and Cory Thomas was working in construction when they died. Heat-illness deaths have decreased because of CAL/OSHA outreach, education, and enforcement, yet, these two deaths demonstrate the efforts are not reaching all workplaces. Immigrants often find themselves in these lower-regulation work environments, creating dangerous work conditions. Farmworker advocacy group UFW is currently promoting legislation that would protect workers from heat-illness by improving stronger enforcement provisions.

California legislature to decide whether to limit S-COMM cooperation with the TRUST Act
Secure Communities is the notorious program that has lead to the deportations of many immigrants. The program shares fingerprint of arrestees with ICE and was initially billed as a voluntary program to deport the dangerous criminals. After the roll-out of the program, it has been sweeping up immigrants into deportation proceedings and striking fear into many immigrant communities. The California TRUST act would limit California’s participation. Senate subcommittee voted the TRUST Act out of committee on a 5-2 vote Tuesday.  It now goes to the Senate appropriations committee.

NY Times makes strong critique of Obama’s deportation policy
Citing examples of dashed hopes for immigration reform, the  NY Times published an editorial chastising the Obama administration for its inaction. The opinion piece was a follow-up from another NY Times article citing the failure of DHS Secretary Morton’s administrative review of over 400,000 deportation cases. The review has only closed 2% of cases, attributing the low clearance to time consuming background checks.

SF Weekly and other regional weekly’s explore the racist foundations of anti-immigrant, anti-suffrage laws
Recognizing the impetus of many anti-immigrant laws, Village Voice Media, a conglomerate of regional publications, sheds light on the laws constructed to dehumanize Mexican immigrants in Arizona. They also profile Voter ID laws that limit voting for the poor and people of color. Both sets of laws seek to limit votes for people of color, and to further bloat white upper class suffrage.

CNN’s Fareed Zakaria looks at immigration policy globally
A recent nationwide telephone poll by CNN found that 75% of poll respondents favor SB1070. Another poll found that 73% of respondents do not think our current immigration system is working. To bring a global perspective, Mr. Zakaria chose to review immigration policies from Japan, Canada and Europe, hoping to find new insights. In Japan, he finds a restrictionist policy highlighted by a 2% foreign-born population and labor shortage. In Europe, he finds a more open approach to immigrants, that has also lead to xenophobic backlash. Finally, in Canada, he finds a country that welcomes immigrants for economic reasons. Per usual, CNN sidesteps root causes for migration and the health impact each of these policies have on immigrant communities.

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