California Report Alleges Poor Working Conditions for So. Oregon Forest Crews
A report compiled by the Alliance of Forest Workers and Harvesters, and the Labor Occupational Health Program at the University of California-Berkley alleges forest workers in Josephine and Jackson counties toil in conditions that fail to meet current labor law requirements.
The report, based on interviews with 150 workers from January to June of 2011, says 41 percent stayed on the job while injured; 59 percent worked despite feeling sick and 75 percent never got a ten minute break every four hours.
Many said they had to buy their own safety equipment and did not receive overtime pay.
The report did praise some contractors including Grayback Forestry of Merlin and Lomakatsi of Ashland for providing a safe work environment that surpasses state standards.