The Hamlet Fire

The Hamlet Fire

A Tragic Story of Cheap Food, Cheap Government, and Cheap Lives

Book - 2017
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A 'gifted writer' (Chicago Tribune) uses a long forgotten factory fire in small-town North Carolina to show how cut-rate food and labor have become the new American norm. For decades the small, quiet town of Hamlet, North Carolina thrived thanks to the railroad. But by the 1980s, it had become post-industrial backwater, a magnet for businesses looking for cheap labor with little or almost no official oversight. One of these businesses was Imperial Foods, which paid its workers a dollar or so above the minimum wage to stand in pools of freezing water for hours on end, scraping fat off frozen chicken breasts, and fined them if they went to the bathroom too many times during a shift. Then on the morning of September 3, 1991 - the day after Labor Day - this factory that had never been inspected caught fire. Twenty-five workers - mostly single mothers, many of whom were black - perished behind locked doors. Eighty years after the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire, industrial disasters were supposed
Publisher: New York : The New Press, 2017.
ISBN: 9781620972380
1620972387
Branch Call Number: 363.1196 SIMON
Characteristics: 303 pages : illustrations, maps ; 25 cm

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